Pressure mounts on Biden ahead of student loans cliff
President BidenJoe Biden Florida Man Started The United Robbery For Using Underwear As A Mask In Protest On The Money – Presented By Citi – Rebuild Betterâ¦ Late Than Never? Overnight Energy & Environment – Biden publishes master plan PLUS faces an avalanche of pressure over his administration’s plans to force millions of Americans to resume student loan payments in the coming weeks.
In recent days, the White House has sparked widespread backlash as advocates and progressives urge the administration to push back, or waive altogether, a February date to lift a pandemic forbearance on student loan payments.
âThis is going to be a huge blow to the people who have struggled throughout this pandemic. This is the wrong move, âsaid the senator. Elizabeth warrenElizabeth WarrenHarris says she doesn’t even “think” about whether Biden will run in 2024. Warren backs Manchin Supreme Court enlargement yells at reporter: “You are a bull —-” MORE (D-Mass.) Said this week.
Student loan payments were initially suspended nationwide in March 2020 under a then-ordered moratoriumPresident TrumpDonald Trump More than 100 House Democrats urge Biden to lift restrictions on Cuba amid crisis Delaware judge rejects Fox petition to dismiss Dominion lawsuit Clearer than ever that VHA must remain primary caregiver to veterans PLUS, which was repeatedly extended under the Trump and Biden administrations.
Biden last extended the suspension over the summer until Jan.31, in what the administration then described as the “final extension.” And, despite growing calls from progressives calling for another extension in light of the ongoing pandemic, the White House has not budged from its stance in recent days.
“We are still assessing the impact of the omicron variant, but a smooth transition to reimbursement is a high priority for the administration,” said the White House press secretary. Jen psakiJen PsakiBiden Signs Debt Ceiling Increase, Avoiding Default Graham Says He Believes Biden’s Build Back Better is “Dead Forever” NYT Stephens urges Biden not to show up in 2024 MORE said last week.
The comments fueled criticism on social media and fueled the continued push by progressives urging the president to use his executive power to unilaterally write off student loan debt.
Biden has pushed in the past to write off up to $ 10,000 in student loan debt for individuals, claiming in February he was “ready to write off” the amount, while pushing back calls from other top Democrats go higher or forgo all federal student loans entirely.
But there are divisions among Democrats over whether Biden even has the power to take unilateral action on the issue.
Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy Pelosi Democrats lack a back-up plan with extended child tax credit that will expire (D-Calif.) Said in July that Biden “can postpone, he can delay, but he doesn’t have that power,” adding “that would be better an act of Congress.” But Warren and other progressives have since maintained that Biden could cancel federal student loans with the pencil stroke.
Chief of Staff of the White House Ron klainRon KlainThe Memo: Inflation kicks in as Biden tries to sell economic record Does the media really treat Biden worse than Trump? The White House points the finger at the press MORE said in April that the administration planned to produce a note on Biden’s legal authority on the matter in a few weeks. “And then he’ll look at that legal authority, he’ll look at the policy issues around it, and he’ll make a decision,” he said.
representing Ilhan omarIlhan OmarAIPAC Launches Super PAC Before Mid-Term Democratic House Leaders Resist Triple Ethics Bypass Trump Endorses Lauren Boebert MORE (D-Minn.) Recently led a group of lawmakers in October calling for the memo to be made public. representing Ayanna pressleyAyanna PressleyHouse committee asks Justice Department for answers on execution drug Omar allies address calls for Boebert’s punishment (D-Mass.), Who also signed the letter at the time, said communication with the Biden administration remained “ongoing” on the matter.
In Biden’s first year as president, his office announced its approval of “over $ 11.5 billion in loan cancellations for more than 580,000 borrowers.” But this forgiveness only extends to certain cases, including borrowers suffering from a total and permanent disability, those who have attended schools which have now disappeared, or civil servants.
Many have applauded the actions taken by the administration so far.
“Is it as important as forgiving everyone’s $ 10,000 in debt?” Or simply forgive $ 1.6 trillion? No. But in a normal year, I think those would be really big steps forward, âJustin Draeger, president and CEO of the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators, told The Hill on Thursday.
But others also say more needs to be done to help borrowers with a student loan system that data shows disproportionately burdens people of color.
While the Federal Reserve estimated earlier this year that more than $ 1.7 trillion in student loan debt had been racked up by tens of millions of borrowers nationwide, research has shed light on the disparities racialities that persist within these numbers.
A 2016 report by the Brookings Institution found that black students owed an average of $ 7,400 more than their white counterparts after graduation and said that gap “more than tripled to $ 25,000. “over four years.
The report also found that 7.6% of black college graduates were more likely to default on their debt within four years of graduation, compared to 2.4% of white college graduates.
And although the report says Hispanic borrowers, at the time, shared similar debt levels to white graduates, it found that they were also “more than twice as likely to default” as their white peers. .
âThis is a population very similar to the people who have been most affected financially by COVID,â Winston Berkman-Breen, deputy director of advocacy and policy advice at the Student Borrower Protection Center, told The Hill.
âNot only does the continuation of the hiatus continue a racial justice initiative, but the student loan debt cancellation is a way to somehow redress some of the racial injustices that have occurred in the way that different communities bear the burden of student loan debt in this country, âhe added.
As the White House continues its plan to resume student loan payments on February 1, the senator. Raphael WarnockRaphael WarnockProud Boys supporter sentenced to nearly 3 years in prison for threatening Senator Biden calls on Senate Democrats on voting rights Democrats make desperate effort to change Senate rules MORE (D-Ga.) Led a group of senators to send a letter this month calling on the administration to waive interest on federal student loans, which have also been halted by the pandemic public health emergency.
Not all progressives are on board with the effort, with some continuing to push for the global pause in loan repayments to continue amid the pandemic or be wiped out altogether.
âNo. We need a reversal,â Omar said recently when asked if the push had gone far enough.
But senators said they wanted to get as much relief as possible for borrowers, with about half a month before federal student loan payments resumed.
âI am for the most important relief we can get for the students. I mean, I think it’s really bad for the economy, âSen said. Ron wydenRonald (Ron) Lee Wyden Senate passes Uyghur bill, confirms Chinese ambassador has no back-up plan with extended child tax credit that will expire Biden administration blacklists companies biotechnology companies for human rights violations PLUS (D-Ore.), Who also signed the letter directed by Warnock.
The White House did not immediately respond to questions about its support for the senators’ proposal.
Psaki said the White House would release more details of its plans in the coming weeks and “engage directly with student loan borrowers to ensure they have the resources they need and that they are in the appropriate repayment plan “.