Progressive Democrats push Biden to push forward on student loan cancellation plans

Representative Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash., Questions Attorney General William Barr during a House Judiciary Committee hearing on Department of Justice oversight on Capitol Hill Tuesday, July 28, 2020 in Washington. Matt McClain / The Washington Post via AP, Pool
  • Progressives continue to push President Biden to write off the student loan debt of millions of borrowers.

  • Despite the party’s stalled reconciliation bill, the progressives have not given in on this issue.

  • Senator Chuck Schumer urged the president to write off $ 50,000 in federal student debt per borrower.

Progressive Democrats are pushing President Joe Biden to take action on student loan cancellation even as party leaders continue to chart a course to push through their stalled multibillion-dollar reconciliation bill.

About 45 million Americans hold $ 1.7 trillion in student loan debt, according to the US Federal Reserve.

Many who have borne the burden, alongside progressive lawmakers and consumer advocates, want Biden to write off up to $ 50,000 in federally-held student debt per borrower.

The president has so far resisted, wondering if he had the unilateral authority to make such a decision.

Biden said earlier this year he was “ready to write off $ 10,000 debt,” but large-scale student loan debt reviews were neither included in 1’s COVID-19 relief plan , $ 9 trillion passed last March, nor in the “human” infrastructure bill. which focuses on child care, healthcare and climate policy, among other priorities.

However, for Representative Pramila Jayapal of Washington, chair of the influential Congressional Progressive Caucus, the issue of student loans remains at the forefront.

“Student debt relief is good for people and good for the economy. @POTUS can and should ease the burden of student debt for 43 million Americans,” she tweeted last Thursday.

Senate Democratic Majority Leader Chuck Schumer also lobbied Biden on the issue last week, saying the president can take action through his executive powers.

“Today would be a great day for President Biden and Vice President Harris of #CancelStudentDebt,” tweeted the senator from New York part of a routine he used to draw attention to the problem.

As the large-scale cancellation has gained momentum among Democrats on Capitol Hill since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, Schumer has been vocal about implementing a loan forgiveness since Biden is in the White House.

Supporters of student debt cancellation also point to the enthusiasm it would generate among young voters for Democratic candidates in a year when the party seeks to defend its weak majorities in Congress.

“I think moderates who go into tough races, it will make a difference to them whether the student debt is canceled or not,” Thomas Gokey, organizer and co-founder of Debt Collective, told The Hill.

Read the original article on Business Insider

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