GOP pollster says four-year colleges might not be right path for all students

Republican pollster B.J. Martino suggested in an interview that aired on Thursday that a four-year higher education may not be the answer for all students. 

"We have set a four-year college as the standard by which everyone should go to," Martino, a partner at the Tarrance Group, told Hill.TV's Jamal Simmons on "What America's Thinking" on Wednesday. 

"Yet there are so many high-paying jobs for people who can weld, or can operate machinery, and that doesn't require a four-year college degree," he continued. 

"You don't have to come out with all of that debt, and you can go get a good job that can provide a lifetime of employment," he said. 

Martino's comments come as college tuition continues to rise in the U.S. and as a number of Democratic hopefuls in 2020, including Sens. Bernie SandersBernie SandersJoe Biden faces an uncertain path Bernie Sanders vows to go to 'war with white nationalism and racism' as president Biden: 'There's an awful lot of really good Republicans out there' MORE (I-Vt.) and Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenPossible GOP challenger says Trump doesn't doesn't deserve reelection, but would vote for him over Democrat Joe Biden faces an uncertain path The Memo: Trump pushes back amid signs of economic slowdown MORE (D-Mass.), have proposed making college free for students.

The average cost for private four-year colleges in the 2018-2019 school year was $35,676, while at public universities an out-of-state resident paid on average $21,629 and an in-state student paid an average of $9,716. 

— Julia Manchester