Political Science Now

APSA Statement on Impact of Tax Bill on the Training and Advancement of Students

The American Political Science Association, a membership association of over 12,000 political scientists, expresses deep concern about provisions in the House tax bill (HR 1, Tax Cuts and Jobs Act) that remove tax benefits to support the training and advancement of students in political science and across academia. The bill would amend the tax code to remove a provision excluding graduate student tuition waivers from income tax, thereby increasing the costs of graduate study, to the detriment of fostering future scholars in political science and other disciplines. The bill also would remove interest rate deductions for student loans. Unlike the House bill, a similar tax bill in the Senate does not remove these existing tax provisions for students.  The proposed provisions in the House tax bill threaten to seriously undermine the worldwide leadership of the US in higher education and greatly undermine the long-term health and vitality of higher education institutions, with grave consequences for economic competitiveness and innovation.  Thus, we urge the House of Representatives to reject these provisions affecting students and higher education institutions.