GOP Bill Would Annihilate Biden’s Student Loan Help

by Joshua Brown
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President Joe Biden wanted to help people with their student loans, but the U.S. debt law that the House Republicans passed would stop him from doing it. The law does not allow for loan cancellation or making repaying easier so students won’t be getting any help with paying off their debt. Republicans think this is a victory for taxpayers, but Democrats don’t agree because it could make college more expensive and put up a roadblock for those who need financial assistance.

A group of politicians have created a bill that would stop the two major plans from president Biden that would provide up to $20,000 in debt relief for around 40 million Americans and reduce monthly payments for millions. Also, it would take away the pause on federal student loan payments so people have to start repaying them earlier than expected.

On Wednesday, the House Committee on Education and the Workforce’s chairwoman, Virginia Foxx from North Carolina, said that President Biden’s plan for student debt was a program that might be too expensive. According to Ms. Foxx, the program costs over $500 billion which is similar to giving free college – paid for by normal people.

President Biden has stated that he will reject the new legislation, and his plan to cancel student debt is seen as untouchable by some Democratic senators who may not support it. Two of the most powerful advocates for student debt cancellation are Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Senator Bernie Sanders from Vermont, who is also in charge of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee.

Lawmakers from different political backgrounds agree that the student loan system needs to be fixed. The problem has become important due to college costs going up and many people owing over $1.6 trillion in student debt.

Republicans see this as a chance to challenge President Biden’s plan to cancel student debt. Already, Conservatives have successfully stopped his plan in the courts, and it is now going through the Supreme Court, who lean towards Conservative views.

The new legislation is different from the GOP lawsuits because it targets all of President Biden’s student debt ideas, including a repayment plan that hasn’t gotten as much attention. This repayment plan would replace four current plans with kinder terms.

The government proposed a plan in January that would lower the amount of money you need to pay each month if you borrow. It will change from 10%, which is what it is now, to 5%! You won’t even have to pay anything if your yearly income is less than $30,000, which was only $24,000 before. Also, there won’t be any interest if all monthly payments are made on time and accurately. Sadly, this plan could be taken away due to a Republican bill.

The Republican plan wants to stop the Education Department from making rules that cost more money for the federal student aid program. This would be a really big change to how the agency is working now.

Politicians in both parties have used their power to make changes to loan programs without having to go through Congress. In 2019, the Trump administration used its authority to erase debt for disabled soldiers, and President Biden changed a program that forgives debt for people who do important jobs like being teachers or firefighters.

Experts don’t agree on the GOP bill, because they think it might make the student debt problem worse.

Mike Pierce from the Student Borrower Protection Center warns that if this new repayment plan is blocked, people who don’t make enough money to cover their loan payments will remain stuck in debt.

The proposed bill could also cause deep budget cuts across some of the Education Department’s biggest initiatives.

The government estimates it will have to cut Pell Grants for 80,000 college students. This means the maximum amount of money which those students can receive will be reduced by $1,000. Schools with less money in general are also getting $4 billion taken away from them and there is also less money available for student mental health services.

Justin Draeger, the president and CEO of the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators, said that the Pell reduction stops many Americans from achieving their educational goals.

However, Foxx argued that the bill doesn’t mention anything about Pell Grants. She also added that if Democrats worked with Republicans, then this problem wouldn’t be happening in the first place.

The Education Secretary said Republicans were doing something ‘reckless’ and it would slow down attempts to help students through the pandemic. Meanwhile, a person in charge of an education panel in the House called the bill a ‘bad deal’.

Scott said on the House floor Wednesday that every time a Republican President has been in office since Nixon, they have left the office with a lower amount of money in the budget than when they first started.

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