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Martin O’Malley Just Unveiled His Plan to End Student Debt, and It’s the Boldest One Yet

"Debt-free" might not sound as sexy as simply "free," but O'Malley's approach could in fact create a more effective mandate for radically reducing the cost of college in the United States. That's because Sanders' focus on tuition diverts attention away from a vital part of the equation — costs for everything out of the classroom, from housing to text books.
"Debt-free college is in many ways more progressive than offering free tuition, since non-tuition costs make up well over half of what students pay, and take on debt, for," Mark Huelsman, a senior policy analyst at the think tank Demos, told Mic.