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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

Breaking: Court Rejects CollegeAmerica's Effort to Dismiss Fraud Case

(0) Comments | Posted November 23, 2015 | 3:44 PM

A Colorado state trial court has rejected nearly every aspect of a motion by a former for-profit college company to dismiss a fraud lawsuit brought by the Colorado attorney general.  In a November 17 opinion, Judge Ross B.H. Buchanan denied...
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Unrepentant EDMC CEO Will 'Push Back' Against Gainful Employment Rule

(0) Comments | Posted November 16, 2015 | 1:10 PM


At a press conference this morning, the Justice Department, the Department of Education, and a group of state attorneys general announced what Attorney General Loretta Lynch called a "landmark settlement" of fraud charges against for-profit college company Education Management Corporation (EDMC)....

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For-Profit Colleges Top 5 Video Countdown!

(0) Comments | Posted November 4, 2015 | 6:55 PM

Every week there are amazing videos by and about America's predatory for-profit colleges, which receive billions annually in taxpayer money, spend nearly a quarter of that money on advertising, deceive many students into enrolling, charge sky-high prices, have enormous dropout rates, leave even many graduates buried in debt,...

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"The Good Wife" and the Bad College

(0) Comments | Posted November 3, 2015 | 3:43 PM

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As approximately 900 people have kindly informed me in the past 36 hours, the CBS drama "The Good Wife" on Sunday highlighted the struggles of students seeking legal redress for abuses they suffered at the hands of high-priced,...

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McCain Lashes Out At Durbin, Defends Veteran-Abusing For-Profit Colleges

(0) Comments | Posted October 29, 2015 | 2:48 PM

Senator John McCain (R-AZ), in a speech on the Senate floor yesterday afternoon, charged that fellow Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) has "orchestrated" a "shameful ... vendetta against for-profit universities." McCain upped the ante by asserting that Durbin has a "well-known record of not supporting the men and women who are serving in...

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McCain, Alexander Press Department of Defense to Back off of University of Phoenix, Their Donor

(0) Comments | Posted October 22, 2015 | 8:29 PM


Republican Senators John McCain (AZ), Jeff Flake (AZ), and Lamar Alexander (TN) wrote today to Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter calling on him to "reconsider" the Department's decision to put the largest for-profit college, the University of Phoenix, on probation...

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For-Profit College Owner, Who Used Strippers As Lure, Goes On Trial

(0) Comments | Posted October 20, 2015 | 11:05 AM

Amor outside

Alejandro Amor, the former owner-CEO of for-profit FastTrain College, is scheduled to face a jury trial in Miami Wednesday morning. Amor and his co-defendant, former FastTrain admissions staffer Anthony Mincey, face criminal charges of defrauding the federal government to obtain about $6.5...

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Climate Denier Response to WSJ Story Revealing Coal Payments: (1) Dog Ate Homework, (2) I'm A Lawyer

(0) Comments | Posted October 16, 2015 | 2:27 PM


Professional climate change denier Christopher Horner offered some interesting responses to the Wall Street Journal when it asked about a court filing indicating that Horner had received $18,600 this year from coal company Alpha Natural Resources before it filed for bankruptcy...

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Purveyors of Wisdom on Higher Ed Panel Have Advanced Harmful for-Profit College Agenda

(0) Comments | Posted October 14, 2015 | 10:16 PM

Today, the day after the New York Times ran a blockbuster front-page lead story describing some of the worst ongoing abuses of big for-profit colleges, one of the nation's leading higher education philanthropies kicked off a major conference in Washington with a panel...

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Group Holding Bipartisan Presidential Debate Today is Dominated by Corporate Lobbyists

(0) Comments | Posted October 12, 2015 | 1:50 PM


The non-profit group No Labels held an unusual candidate forum this morning in New Hampshire. The "No Labels Problem Solver Convention" featured five Republicans plus three Democrats -- including Donald Trump, Chris Christie, John Kasich, Bernie Sanders, and Martin O'Malley -- all...

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For-Profit Colleges Enlist Capitol Hill Supplicants, U.S. Chamber in Renewed Push Against Obama Rule

(0) Comments | Posted October 8, 2015 | 3:10 PM


The for-profit college's trade association, APSCU, was once mighty but is now hobbled, discredited, and depleted. Yet the group, and its industry, still have the money -- most it from taxpayer-funded student aid to its schools --  to

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For-Profit Colleges Appear to Use Random WASP College Name Generator

(0) Comments | Posted October 6, 2015 | 1:55 PM

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Yesterday, Birmingham, Alabama-based for-profit college company Education Corporation of America (ECA) announced the new name for the campuses, until now called Kaplan College, that it recently bought from Graham Holdings Company. The schools will henceforth be...
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Report Exposes For-Profit College Abuses in Converting to Non-Profits

(0) Comments | Posted October 6, 2015 | 1:27 AM

An investigative report released this morning documents how some for-profit college owners have converted their companies into non-profit schools in a way that allows them to evade the regulatory obligations and deservedly bad reputation of for-profits while continuing to reap enormous financial benefits.  

These operators have done so, the report finds,...

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House Democrat Group Asks Administration to Forgive Debt of All Corinthian Students

(0) Comments | Posted September 29, 2015 | 9:20 AM


A group of Democratic members of the House of Representatives are sending a letter this morning calling on the Department of Education to "automatically discharge the debt" of all students who attended campuses run by now-bankrupt Corinthian Colleges, one of the worst...

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For-Profit College Lobbyist Explains Decades of Fraud as Humanitarian Mission

(0) Comments | Posted September 23, 2015 | 3:25 PM


A Politico profile of Secretary of Education Arne Duncan quotes just two commenters regarding the Obama Administration's effort to curb abuses by for-profit colleges, and both of them have been long-time lobbyists for the industry: bulldog lawyer Lanny Davis and former...

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Massachusetts Attorney General: For-Profit College Kaplan Deceived Students

(4) Comments | Posted July 30, 2015 | 9:00 PM

Massachusetts attorney general Maura Healey today announced settlements of her investigations of two large for-profit college chains -- Kaplan and Lincoln Technical Institute -- for unfair and deceptive student recruiting practices. Kaplan will pay $1.375 million to former students, and Lincoln Tech will pay out about $1 million.


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Corinthian to Justice Dept: Get Our Docs Before ECMC Abandons Them

(11) Comments | Posted July 20, 2015 | 3:38 PM

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A lawyer for shut-down Corinthian Colleges has written to a U.S. Justice Department lawyer investigating the for-profit college company, warning that some school records may be "abandoned" as soon as next month. The June 29 letter, obtained by Republic...

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Debt Collection Agency Run By Ex-Bush Official & Ex-Corinthian Exec Sues to Pile More Penalties on Broke Students

(14) Comments | Posted July 17, 2015 | 4:17 PM


Inside Higher Ed reports today that USA Funds, a corporation engaged in collecting federal student loan debts from borrowers, has sued the U.S. Department of Education over a policy statement the Department released last week barring companies from charging loan...

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APSCU Letter to For-Profit Colleges: Our New Direction

(0) Comments | Posted July 15, 2015 | 1:32 PM

Former congressman Steve Gunderson (R-WI), president of the for-profit colleges' main trade association, APSCU, this morning sent a dramatically-worded letter to APSCU members announcing organizational changes that "have the potential to create a new beginning for the sector and...
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Big For-Profit Colleges Quit Trade Group APSCU

(4) Comments | Posted July 14, 2015 | 11:50 AM

Some of the largest for-profit college companies -- including, last month, DeVry and Kaplan -- have recently left the industry's main trade group, the Association of Private Sector Colleges and Universities (APSCU). The defections have come amid a rapid decline in the reputations and fortunes of many for-profit colleges --...

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