WASHINGTON D.C. — Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and other Democrats are urging President Biden to use his executive authority to cancel student loan debt.
Schumer (D-NY), Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Representative Ayanna Pressley (D-MA) reintroduced a resolution which would allow the secretary of education to cancel up to $50,000 in student loan debt for federal student loan borrowers.
The resolution also called on Biden to take executive action to cancel the debt using existing legal authorities under the Higher Education Act of 1965.
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. — Sen. Elizabeth Warren
It 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.
A continuation of “pausing” student loan payments and interest was also mentioned and suggested to last for the entire duration of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“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 said that this would be the most effective executive action.
“President Biden can take the single most effective executive action available,” she said. “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.”
On Biden’s first day in office he extended the pause on federal student loan payments and interest until Sept. 30.
“The bottom line is this is one of those things the president can do on his own,” Schumer said. “There’s very little that the president could do with the flick of a pen that would boost our economy more than canceling $50,000 in student debt will be a huge push into our economy.”
Canceling student loan debt would add to the $3.1 trillion nation deficit as outstanding student loan debt has doubled over the past decade nearing $1.7 trillion.