Rep. James Clyburn (D-S.C.) said Sunday that Democratic presidential hopeful Bernie SandersBernie SandersDeVos vows to be advocate for 'great' public schools Sanders tangles with Trump’s Education pick over college costs Senators introduce dueling miners bills MORE’s plan to make public colleges tuition-free would have a deleterious effect on private, historically black colleges and universities (HBCU).
The third-ranking Democrat in the House — who has endorsed Sanders’s primary rival, Hillary ClintonHillary Rodham ClintonTrump puts pressure on GOP Congress Poll: Former Sanders staffer gains steam in race to replace Xavier Becerra Michael Moore: Trump will ‘absolutely’ ban Muslims MORE — said such colleges would not be able to compete under the Vermont senator’s plan.
“You’ve got to think about the consequences of things,” Clyburn said in an interview with BuzzFeed News. “[If] you start handing out two years of free college at public institutions are you ready for all the black, private HBCUs to close down? That’s what’s going to happen.
“Tougaloo College in Mississippi will be closed if you can go to Jackson State for free,” he added.
Clyburn took an additional swipe at Sanders’s education plan at his Clinton endorsement announcement Friday, saying there are no “free lunches.”
“And certainly there’s not going to be any free education,” he said from the historically black Allen University, where he sits on the board.
The South Carolina lawmaker said he supports efforts to make higher education more affordable, but “for you to believe that they’re going to make education free, I don’t think that’s going to happen.”
He said Sanders is “making promises essentially that he can’t deliver on.”