Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., speaks at a campaign house party, Friday, June 14, 2019, in Windham, N.H. Candidates including Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders have proposed plans to eliminate tuition at public colleges and universities, while former Vice President Joe Biden and others back plans for free community college. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)

2020 race brings free college back to the national stage

June 16, 2019 - 8:36 am

The free college movement is back on the national stage as a rallying point for Democrats as they set their sights on the White House.

At least 18 of the party's 23 presidential contenders have come out in support of some version of free college.

Candidates including Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders have proposed eliminating tuition at public colleges and universities. Former Vice President Joe Biden and others are backing plans for free community college.

The issue gained momentum in the 2016 primary but largely fizzled with the election of President Donald Trump, who's seen as hostile to the idea.

Democrats are reviving the issue to confront what some call a college affordability crisis, an issue likely to draw attention in the first primary debates later this month.

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