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College Tuition Tax Plan Favors Wealthy Taxpayers

I was glad to see the Monitor raise concerns about the growing costs of college education in the editorial ``Costly Colleges,'' Jan. 27. But President Clinton's misguided proposal to make college tuition tax-deductible is not the answer.

If, as the editorial warns, rising costs may eventually make college an exclusive privilege, why should the government divert its limited education dollars to subsidizing tuition for wealthy taxpayers?

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Plans to allow withdrawals from retirement savings for education costs are similarly skewed against those who can least afford college or retirement savings. Financial aid proposals for education must be concentrated to assist only qualified students who could not otherwise attend. President Clinton must resist the temptation to please wealthy taxpayers with a program that would not send more students to college, but may encourage colleges to raise tuition in response to the government's misguided largess. Ron Charles, St. Louis

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