Rep. Jared Golden, D-Maine, speaks at a news conference, Tuesday, Nov. 1, 2022, at the State House in Augusta, Maine. Credit: Robert F. Bukaty / AP

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I think Rep. Jared Golden is out of step with the needs and values of working-class Mainers in his opposition to student debt forgiveness.

If he needs a case study from his own district, my son graduated from the University of Maine in 2017 with a degree in education, physics concentration. He worked 30 hours a week through college to pay for his education and, as a result, it took him six years to obtain his bachelor’s degree. He completed his student teaching in Maine and graduated with $71,000 in debt. He had no choice but to leave the state to find a teaching position with enough salary to repay his student loans.

He is now in year seven, teaching science and math in California. “If I had stayed in Maine as a teacher, I would have had student debt until I retired,” he said. Without this debt, he could have worked in Maine, and all taxpayers could have benefited from a science and math teacher in their school system. Debt forgiveness would improve the lives of all Mainers in ways that Rep. Golden apparently has not considered.

Dale J. Gordon