The latest news for student loan forgiveness shows that Biden cancelled $415 million of student loans for 16,000 more student loan borrowers. Biden has now cancelled nearly $15.5 billion of student loans, which is the most of any president. His latest student loan forgiveness benefits student loan borrowers who attended for-profit colleges. The U.S. Department of Education has cancelled $2 billion of student loans for 107,000 borrowers under borrower defense to student loan repayment. In addition to targeted student loan cancellation, Biden has extended student loan relief three times, resulting in more than $75 billion of savings in student loan interest. Despite these accomplishments to benefit student loan borrowers, Sanders (I-VT) says this isn’t enough. According to Sanders, Biden should cancel all student loan debt.
“Good. Now cancel the remaining $1,883,214,046,704 for 44,984,000 other Americans who are still drowning in student debt,” Sanders tweeted in response to Biden cancelling $415 million of student loans.
Sanders has proposed total student loan cancellation, including all private and federal student loan debt. In contrast, Biden supports cancelling $10,000 of student loans. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) support up to $50,000 of student loan cancellation. As a presidential candidate, Warren supported student loan cancellation for 95% of student loan borrowers. Sanders was an active proponent of mass student loan cancellation during his presidential run, and he has proposed similar legislation in the U.S. Senate.
Proponents of wide-scale student loan cancellation say mass student loan forgiveness will stimulate the economy, relieve borrowers from a crushing debt burden, and provide resources to start a family, buy a home and save for retirement. While they welcome the targeted student loan cancellation, critics say Biden hasn’t cancelled enough student debt. (Will student loan payments be postponed until 2023?). For example, $15.5 billion is less than 1% of approximately $1.8 trillion of student loan debt outstanding. They want Biden to use his supposed executive authority to cancel most or all student loan debt. Sanders’ plan would cost $1.8 trillion, while Warren and Schumer’s plan would cost approximately $1 trillion. In contrast, Biden’s plan for $10,000 of student loan cancellation would cost approximate $400 million. Biden has urged Congress to pass legislation to cancel student loans, and he has said he would gladly sign the legislation. However, Biden doesn’t believe he holds any such executive authority without congressional authorization. Importantly, Congress hasn’t even voted on wide-scale student loan cancellation.
Progressives in Congress are fighting for wide-scale student loan relief. However, there is internal inconsistency. Some Democrats want total student loan cancellation. Some want $50,000 of student loan cancellation. Others want $10,000 of student loan forgiveness. (Student loan cancellation reduced to $25,000). Still others in Congress won’t support any wide-scale student loan cancellation. (Student loan forgiveness could be the reason why Democrats will lose the midterm election). Without a unified message, it’s hard to envision a clear path to victory. A better strategy would be unite around a single plan and one dollar amount. (Here’s who won’t get student loan forgiveness). If the president can’t cancel student loans, and progressives are focused on passing mass student loan forgiveness, then Congress should explore alternative avenues beside social media to implement their plan. If there isn’t support for student loan cancellation as currently envisioned, then Democrats would benefit from finding a potential bipartisan plan that could attract moderates, conservatives and Republicans. Otherwise, their efforts may not achieve the student loan relief they are fighting hard to achieve.
With the end of temporary student loan relief approaching, please get prepared for the restart of student loan payments. Here are some popular ways to pay off student loans faster: