FOLLOW THE WEEK ON FACEBOOK
July 17, 2014
Win McNamee/Getty Images

Florida Sen. Marco Rubio (R) has a plan to solve one of student debt's most pressing issues.

In conjunction with Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.), Rubio has introduced a bipartisan bill into the Senate to help solve America's student loan crisis. The Dynamic Repayment Act would ensure students face reasonable monthly payments and eliminate most defaults.

The bill would enroll all federal loan borrowers into a program where they paid 10 percent of earnings each month toward student loan repayment, with a $10,000 annual exemption. The U.S. government would take the money directly from workers' paychecks. Borrowers would also have the option to opt out and prepay their loans without penalty, if they preferred.

Additionally, the bill would forgive up to $57,500 of loans after 20 years, and loans greater than that amount would be forgiven after 30 years.

"Our current loan repayment system often turns what should be reasonable debts into crippling payments," Rubio and Warner told Bloomberg News. "Some graduates find they are forced to work multiple jobs, often in fields they didn't train for, simply to avoid defaulting on student loans... No one should be forced to go broke because they choose to go to college."

By wading into the student loan issue, which has recently been a Democratic concern, Rubio may gain favor with younger voters, a crucial target base for the GOP. Meghan DeMaria

9:36 a.m. ET
Marc Piscotty/Getty Images

The mother of Dylan Klebold, one of two boys who killed 13 people at Columbine High School in 1999, gave her first televised interview Friday. Speaking to ABC's Diane Sawyer, Sue Klebold said she missed warning signs her son was depressed.

"I think we like to believe that our love and our understanding is protective, and that 'if anything were wrong with my kids, I would know,' but I didn't know, and I wasn't able to stop him from hurting other people," she said.

Klebold's interview, which you can watch here, comes as she promotes her Feb. 15 memoir, A Mother's Reckoning: Living in the Aftermath of Tragedy. Julie Kliegman

7:57 a.m. ET
Lennart Preiss/Getty Images

Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev criticized the West for worsening relations with his nation over the conflict in Syria, USA Today reports.

"NATO's attitude toward Russia remains unfriendly and opaque, and one could go so far as to say we have slid back to a new Cold War," he said at a high-level security conference Saturday. "Sometimes I wonder if it is the year 2016 or 1962."

Medvedev disputed a widely held belief that Russian planes have bombed civilians in Syria, The Guardian reports. At the same conference, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry stressed the importance of a political solution to Syria's five-year civil war, rather than resorting to violence. Julie Kliegman

7:30 a.m. ET
Brett Carlsen/Getty Images

Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder (R) will testify before a congressional committee on the Flint water crisis, the Detroit Free Press reports his office said Friday. In the hearing, which has not yet been scheduled, Snyder is expected to speak to what has happened in the city since it switched to lead pipes for tap water in 2014 and what reforms he recommends.

"The people of Flint have suffered because they were failed by all levels of government, and so it is understandable that there are questions at all levels of government," Snyder said in a statement. "In Michigan we are learning a great deal from this crisis and I am hopeful the federal government also will use this as an opportunity to examine health and safety protections in place, assess infrastructure needs, and avoid this type of crisis in the future."

On Thursday, Snyder had called U.S. House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) and asked to testify. Julie Kliegman

February 12, 2016
Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Image

On Friday, New York Mets relief pitcher Jenrry Mejía made Major League Baseball history by becoming the first player to be permanently banned from the league for using performance-enhancing drugs. This marks Mejía's third positive test for PED use in a single calendar year, after he failed a drug test in April 2015 and then another three months later. The Mets said in a statement they were "deeply disappointed" in Mejía, who can apply for reinstatement to the MLB in one year, but would have to sit out a minimum of two years before returning to major league action. Kimberly Alters

February 12, 2016
Scott Eisen/Getty Images

On Friday afternoon, former Virginia Gov. Jim Gilmore announced the suspension of his campaign for president. Although, one could be forgiven forgetting he was even in the race — the long-shot Republican candidate's decision comes after dismal performances in both the New Hampshire primary and Iowa caucus, where he received the support of a measly 12 caucusgoers.

Gilmore's fellow GOP hopefuls Chris Christie and Carly Fiorina also dropped out of the race earlier this week after poor showings in New Hampshire.

And then there were six. Stephanie Talmadge

February 12, 2016
iStock

A Pennsylvania judge posted a sign outside his courtroom reminding citizens that pajama bottoms should not be worn in court. Judge Craig Long said that too many people have been appearing before him without bothering to put on a proper pair of pants. "We have a growing problem of people not dressing appropriately," Long said. "It's just there as a reminder." The Week Staff

February 12, 2016
Olivier Douliery/Getty Images

With House Republicans still divided on how to move forward with plans to pass the budget, House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) reminded lawmakers Friday that there's always the option to just skip the budget altogether. "It would be a shame, but the sky won't fall if we don't do a budget," Ryan said to members at a closed-door meeting. Because of a two-year deal struck last fall between then-Speaker John Boehner and the Obama administration, Ryan contends Congress is not "staring down a cliff" that would force them to make a final call.

However, Ryan warned members, this choice would not come without repercussions. If House Republicans decided against doing a budget, Ryan said the Republican Party would essentially be missing out on a chance to "do big things" in 2017. The GOP would not be able to present their fiscal solutions to the public ahead of the presidential election, nor would they be able to pass all 12 appropriations bills, essentially forcing Congress back into its "crisis-driven cycle of passing spending bills" that Ryan has been trying to avoid, The Hill reports.

Republicans are at an impasse over the prospect of passing a budget that sticks to the previously agreed upon $1.07 trillion spending level. Others are pushing for increased military spending, which Ryan pointed out could only increase by $40 million within current spending levels. "Are House Republicans willing to give up appropriations bills, a balanced budget, entitlement reform, and reconciliation for $40 million?" Ryan asked Friday.

House Republicans have until the beginning of March to reach a decision on how to proceed with the budget plan. Becca Stanek

See More Speed Reads