Politics

Democrats Urge Biden To Cancel Up To $50k In Student Loan Debt By Executive Action

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Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Rep. Ayanna Pressley on Thursday urged President Biden use his executive authority to cancel up to $50,000 in student loan debt for federal student loan borrowers.

Schumer, D-N. Y., Warren, D-Mass., and Pressley, D-Mass., on Thursday reintroduced a resolution, which would allow the secretary of education to “cancel up to $50,000 in federal student debt.”

The resolution also called on Biden to take executive action to “administratively cancel up to $50,000 in Federal student loan debt for Federal student loan borrowers” using “existing legal authorities” under the Higher Education act of 1965. The resolution also “encourages” Biden to use executive authority under the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, which would prevent administrative debt cancellation from resulting in a tax liability for borrowers.

The lawmakers also encouraged Biden to “continue to pause” student loan payments and interest for federal student loan borrowers for the “entire duration of the COVID-19 pandemic.”

More than four dozen Democratic lawmakers in both the House and the Senate joined the resolution on Thursday.

“Student loan debt is weighing down millions of families in New York and across this country,” Schumer said in a statement. “During a time of historic and overlapping crises, which are disproportionately impacting communities of color, we must do everything in our power to deliver real relief to the American people, lift up our struggling economy and close the racial wealth gap. Democrats are committed to big, bold action, and this resolution to cancel up to $50,000 in federal student loan debt is one of the strongest steps the president can take to achieve these goals.”

Warren added that “President Biden can take the single most effective executive action available to provide a massive stimulus to our economy, help narrow the racial wealth gap, and lift this impossible burden off of tens of millions of families” by cancelling the student loan debt.

“President Biden has the legal authority to cancel billions in student debt with the stroke of a pen and he must meet the moment by using that authority, which would not only set us on a path to an equitable recovery, but would also help reduce the racial wealth gap,” Pressley said.

Biden, on his first day in office, extended the pause on federal student loan payments and interest through Sept. 30, 2021.

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