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President Biden rejects $50,000 student loan forgiveness plan

Joe Biden declined to forgive $50,000 in student loan debt, but says he will sign legislation to offer $10,000 in student loan forgiveness.

Joe Biden MATT SLOCUM / AP

Joe Biden declined a proposal to forgive up to $50,000 of student loan debt during a recent CNN town hall.

During the press conference on Tuesday night (Feb. 16), when the president was asked about the steps he would take to offer up to $50,000 in loan forgiveness to student borrowers, he simply responded, “I will not make that happen.”

“My point is: I understand the impact of debt, and it can be debilitating. I am prepared to write off the $10,000 debt but not $50 [thousand], because I don’t think I have the authority to do it,” said Biden, who went on to explain the circumstances in which he believes forgiveness should be provided.

According to Biden, student loan forgiveness should be based “on whether or not you go to a private university or a public university.” Debt should not cancelled for students who went to elite schools like “Harvard and Yale and Penn,” he explained, adding the money should instead go to early childhood education. The president also supported the expansion of student loan forgiveness for public sector workers and announced that interest on student loans will be eliminated.

In December, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Elizabeth Warren requested POTUS cancel up to $50,000 worth of student loan debt. A joint resolution proposing a cancellation of student debt was introduced by House Democrats in February, and now, in yet another resolution, Schumer and Warren are pushing back on Biden’s recent rejection.

“An ocean of student loan debt is holding back 43 million borrowers and disproportionately weighing down Black and brown Americans,” the Senate representatives said. “Cancelling $50,000 in federal student loan debt will help close the racial wealth gap, benefit the 40% of borrowers who do not have a college degree, and help stimulate the economy. It’s time to act. We will keep fighting.”

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