- President Joe Biden is considering a plan to forgive $10,000 in student loan debt, according to Bloomberg.
- Biden wanted to push a debt relief bill through Congress, but is now considering an executive order.
- Progressives have long called for the administration to come up with a plan to tackle student loans.
President Joe Biden plans to forgive a minimum of $10,000 in student loan debt per borrower via enforcement action, according to people with knowledge of the matter who spoke to Bloomberg.
A sweeping effort to cancel Biden’s debt would represent a massive reversal from the staunchly cautious approach he has taken on the issue since entering the White House last year. And it would also present an economic and ideological dilemma for the administration, as deficit hawks feel broad cancellation may make inflation problems worse while many liberal allies may think the president’s efforts don’t go far enough. .
According to Bloomberg, nothing concrete has yet been finalized, but any cancellation plan that emerges is likely to be geared toward lower-income and middle-class Americans, according to people familiar with the talks.
Biden recently laid out some of his terms for any potential plan, reiterating his opposition to eliminating about $50,000 in student debt per borrower, a longtime wish that many lawmakers — including Sens. Chuck Schumer of New York and Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts—along with Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York and Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts—have called on the administration to respond.
“I plan to deal with some [student] debt reduction,” Biden remarked at the White House on Thursday. “I’m not looking at $50,000 in debt reduction, but I’m looking carefully at whether there will be debt forgiveness. additional. I’ll have an answer to that in the next few weeks.”
The Washington Post recently reported that the administration is launching a plan to exclude high earners from any debt cancellation framework that the administration may develop, with senior aides pondering limiting relief to individual borrowers who earned less than $125,000 or $150,000 last year, while setting a limit of $250,000 or $300,000 for co-filers.
If Biden wrote off $10,000 in student loan debt for each borrower, the total would be about $245 billion, according to the nonprofit Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget.
Earlier this month, the Biden administration extended the federal pause on student loan repayments for the fourth time — through August 31 — giving borrowers an additional four months from the previous May 1 restart date. .
However, progressive Democrats have been pushing for more aggressive action on the issue for more than a year now, arguing that the president has wide latitude to eliminate student debt. Many lawmakers are increasingly concerned that Biden’s inaction on canceling student loans will lead to a drop in turnout this fall among young voters – many of whom were lured by independent Sen. Bernie’s candidacy Vermont Sanders because of this very issue.
Sanders said Wednesday that Biden should eliminate “all student debt in all of America.”
Democratic Rep. Mondaire Jones of New York told Bloomberg that while he felt the president should eliminate more than the $10,000 baseline that would be considered, “even $10,000 would be transformative for millions of Americans.” .
However, moderate Democrats have been less vocal on the large-scale cancellation plans – with Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia telling reporters last week that he wasn’t sure if he would ‘just cancel it completely. — while Republicans overwhelmingly oppose the relief plans, arguing that the administration’s potential actions would benefit upper-class voters at the expense of lower-income people.
In recent months, Biden has seen his support among Millennials and Generations X and Z decline precipitously compared to his stronger standing with the silent generation and baby boomers.