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David Halperin
David Halperin advises organizations on strategy, policy, politics, communications, and legal matters, and he writes at He was previously: founding director of Campus Progress and senior vice president at the Center for American Progress; senior policy advisor for Howard Dean's presidential campaign; founding executive director of the American Constitution Society; White House speechwriter and special assistant for national security affairs to President Clinton; co-founder of the Internet company RealNetworks; and counsel to the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Entries by David Halperin

In Iowa, Clinton Stresses Harms to Students From Predatory For-Profit Colleges

(25) Comments | Posted April 14, 2015 | 5:11 PM


In keeping with the strong populist economics theme of her campaign rollout, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton today took aim at the predatory for-profit colleges whose overpriced, low-quality programs are ruining students' lives. The former secretary of state, participating in her...

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Student Debt Strike? Read This Texas Mom's Powerful Words

(60) Comments | Posted April 5, 2015 | 11:48 AM


The 100-plus former students of for-profit Corinthian Colleges who have boldly asserted that they won't pay back their student loans have garnered widespread attention and provided a powerful jolt to the debates about predatory colleges and our nation's mounting student debt....

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Lawyer Suing Neighbor for Smoking Is Defender of Corporations Accused of Toxic Smoke

(0) Comments | Posted March 24, 2015 | 12:49 PM


There's been recent media coverage of how two Washington, DC, lawyers named Brendan and Nessa Coppinger have sued and convinced a local judge to issue a temporary restraining order prohibiting their neighbor, Edwin Gray, from smoking in his Capitol Hill row...

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Leaders Tell Obama: Time Running Out on Preventing Chemical Disasters

(0) Comments | Posted March 23, 2015 | 1:21 PM


Late last week, hundreds of organizations and people sent a letter to President Obama warning that his administration is running of time to act on an issue long-identified by the president as essential to our national security and public...

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VIDEO - Durbin: Corinthian Buyer ECMC Is Breaking Its Promises

(3) Comments | Posted March 12, 2015 | 6:00 PM

In a floor speech today, Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) said he was "troubled" that ECMC, the debt collection company that has acquired more than 50 campuses of collapsing for-profit college chain Corinthian, is "already, just weeks into owning and operating these schools, failing to live up to the promises they made to...

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What Law Students (And Everyone) Should Know About For-Profit Colleges

(0) Comments | Posted March 12, 2015 | 1:17 PM

This article originally appeared in the Harvard Law Record, a student-run publication. It also appears on Republic Report

I'm a Washington DC lawyer and policy advocate, and I spend a couple days a week trying to expose and end the...

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Colorado Sues CollegeAmerica for Systematic Deception

(0) Comments | Posted February 17, 2015 | 9:33 PM


A state court in Denver has just unsealed the complaint that the Colorado attorney general brought late last year against CollegeAmerica / Stevens-Henager, a former for-profit college network that recently converted to non-profit status. The school's conversion seems to...

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Misleading Assurances in the Corinthian-ECMC Deal

(0) Comments | Posted February 13, 2015 | 2:52 PM


Student loan debt collection company ECMC has just begun its takeover of 56 campuses of the failed, predatory for-profit Corinthian Colleges. But already, assurances from both federal government officials and ECMC itself regarding protections for students in the deal appear to have...

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Inside the ECMC-Corinthian Deal: Will Students Be Protected?

(1) Comments | Posted January 23, 2015 | 11:49 AM


The U.S. Department of Education's ill-advised effort to broker the sale of 56 campuses of the discredited Corinthian for-profit college chain to ECMC, a student debt collection operation, has hit some snags. The transfer of campuses to ECMC has been delayed nearly...

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For-Profit College Investor Now Owns Controlling Share of Leading Education Trade Publication

(0) Comments | Posted January 14, 2015 | 12:46 PM


Quad Partners, a New York private equity firm that is invested heavily in the for-profit college industry, and whose founder has aggressively opposed regulation of that troubled industry, has acquired a controlling stake in the respected trade publication Inside Higher Ed (IHE),...

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Declaring Corinthian Colleges Too Big To Fail: A Terrible Idea

(0) Comments | Posted December 17, 2014 | 12:26 PM


The U.S. Department of Education has blessed a deal under which a non-profit student debt collection company, Minnesota-based Education Credit Management Corporation (ECMC), will pay $24 million to acquire 56 campuses, operating under the brands Everest and WyoTech, owned...

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30 Years After Bhopal, Long Past Time to Make Chemical Plants Safer

(0) Comments | Posted December 10, 2014 | 10:18 AM

Geismar LA

Thirty years ago this month, a gas leak at a Union Carbide pesticide plant in Bhopal, India, created a toxic cloud that eventually killed perhaps 20,000 people and injured 500,000 more. No chemical accident since then has approached the scale of the...

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Neutron CEO Tells Customers That Republic Report Stories Are False; Ex-Employees Disagree

(0) Comments | Posted December 5, 2014 | 7:34 AM

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While one for-profit college in Miami, called FastTrain, has just been sued by law enforcement for, among other things, allegedly hiring scantily-clad women to lure men to its admissions office (an allegation noted by Republic Report back...

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For-Profit College Marketer Thrived By Posting Fake Ads To Popular Job Sites

(6) Comments | Posted November 24, 2014 | 3:28 PM

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Neutron Interactive, a Salt Lake City-based business, regularly posted fake job listings on popular job websites including and for the purpose of tricking job-seekers into visiting its own websites, according to former Neutron employees. These Neutron...

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ECMC CEO Explains Deal to Buy Troubled Corinthian Campuses

(0) Comments | Posted November 20, 2014 | 12:00 PM


Confirming rumors that have swirled for weeks, today ECMC Group announced it has reached an agreement to acquire 56 of the 107 campuses now owned by the crumbling, discredited Corinthian Colleges for-profit chain.  A corporate filing from Corinthian says the...

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Still More Scam For-Profit College Websites -- Linked to Dallas Mystery Man

(2) Comments | Posted November 13, 2014 | 4:55 PM


I reported yesterday and this morning on scam websites that promise people help with jobs, food stamps, heat assistance, Medicaid -- things that low-income and working Americans want -- but the sites are really just fronts to get people's phone numbers,...

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More Scam Websites to Lure the Poor to For-Profit Colleges

(1) Comments | Posted November 13, 2014 | 1:51 PM

Yesterday I reported on how a Utah-based company, Neutron Interactive, operated a website that promised jobs but was in reality a scam -- it seemed to function mainly to send customer leads to at least one other company's Salt Lake City call center, called EdSoup, whose only purpose, in...

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Scam: Websites Promising Jobs and Medicaid Are Instead Bait for For-Profit College Telemarketers

(5) Comments | Posted November 12, 2014 | 12:28 PM

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A network of U.S. marketing companies run glossy websites promising jobs, health benefits, food stamps, and heating assistance -- sites with names like or But according to former employees of a company connected to these operations, the...

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Entitled For-Profit Colleges File Meritless Suit to Block Obama Rule

(1) Comments | Posted November 7, 2014 | 3:33 PM


On Thursday, November 6, the national trade association of for-profit colleges, APSCU, sued the Obama administration in federal court in Washington, D.C., to strike down the new 2014 "gainful employment" rule. The complaint repeats many of the claims from APSCU's suit...

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New Gainful Employment Rule Is Weak, but Predatory For-profit Colleges Remain on the Ropes

(0) Comments | Posted October 30, 2014 | 12:01 AM

empty classroom

The Obama administration is releasing its "gainful employment" rule, aimed at curbing abuses by federally-funded career colleges, at 7 am Thursday.  I can't fully evaluate the rule without seeing its details. But I have obtained a press...

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