April 14, 2024

Biden makes another foray into student loan forgiveness despite opposition

Despite the U.S. Supreme Court having already weighed in negatively on a prior attempt to erase billions in student debt obligations, the White House has just taken another bite at the apple.

As the Daily Caller reports, on Friday, President Joe Biden announced another $7.4 billion in canceled balances via the Saving on a Valuable Education (SAVE) plan.

Try, try again

Friday's announcement comes in the wake of the high court's June 2023 ruling that blocked the administration's effort to forgive outstanding obligations of roughly 40 million borrowers by way of an executive order.

Apparently undeterred by the court's disapproval, Biden took another crack at fulfilling a bold campaign promise made back in 2020, something that could also serve to bolster his flagging support among younger voters.

A White House press release explained, “This latest round of debt cancellation comes on the heels of President Biden announcing new plans that, if implemented, would cancel student debt for over 30 million Americans when combined with actions the Administration has taken over the last three years.”

“This week's announcements reinforce the president's commitment to using every path available to deliver student debt relief to as many borrowers as possible through various actions,” the statement continued.

The Penn Wharton Budget Model suggests that the new program unveiled this week comes with a price tag of roughly $84 billion, a tally that must be added to the $475 billion cost of various forgiveness initiatives that have already been rolled out.

Critics weigh in

Unsurprisingly, Biden's announcement was not met with a warm welcome in all corners, with a number of lawmakers voicing serious reservations about the plans, as the New York Post notes.

Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-LA), ranking member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, took particular aim at the concept, saying, “These loan schemes do not forgive debt. They transfer the debt from those who willingly took it on to the 87% of Americans who decided not to go to college or already worked to pay off their loans.”

“This is an unfair ploy to buy votes before an election and does absolutely nothing to address the high cost of education that puts young people right back into debt,” Cassidy added.

Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-NC), chair of the House Education and Workforce Committee, had a similar reaction, stating, “Here we go again.”

“President Biden continues to break the law in his quest to make college 'free.' The problem is these so-called solutions to the student loan system outlined in the president's plans force taxpayers  -- many of whom never stepped foot on a college campus -- to pay for loans others willingly took out and benefitted from,” she added, expressing the sentiments of millions.

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