Ocasio-Cortez: ‘The case against student loan forgiveness is looking shakier by the day’
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) responded to President Biden’s comments on student loan forgiveness late Tuesday, saying the case against it “is looking shakier by the day.”
“I do think in this moment of economic pain and strain that we should be eliminating interest on the debts that are accumulated, No. 1. And No. 2, I’m prepared to write off the $10,000 debt, but not [$50,000],” Biden said during the CNN town hall in Wisconsin.
Pressed by a questioner in the audience if he would see to cancelation of $50,000 in student loan debt per borrower, Biden said: “I will not make that happen.”
Ocasio-Cortez, a leading progressive who has advocated for free college and universal student loan debt forgiveness, later said she worried about Biden’s posture on the issue.
“Who cares what school someone went to? Entire generations of working class kids were encouraged to go into more debt under the guise of elitism. This is wrong,” the congresswoman tweeted. “Nowhere does it say we must trade-off early childhood education for student loan forgiveness. We can have both.”
Ocasio-Cortez also warned her more than 12 million Twitter followers that the “case against student loan forgiveness is looking shakier by the day.”
“We’ve got the *Senate Majority Leader* on board to forgive $50k. Biden’s holding back, but many of the arguments against it just don’t hold water on close inspection,” she added before imploring Biden and leading Democrats to “keep pushing!”
The case against student loan forgiveness is looking shakier by the day.
We’ve got the *Senate Majority Leader* on board to forgive $50k. Biden’s holding back, but many of the arguments against it just don’t hold water on close inspection.
We can and should do it. Keep pushing!
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) February 17, 2021
The White House has said the Biden administration was at one point reviewing whether the president could legally take unilateral action to cancel student loan debt. Press secretary Jen Psaki noted this week that Biden would sign a bill forgiving $10,000 if Congress drafted and passed legislation on the issue.
A group of Democratic lawmakers, including Sen. Elizabeth Warren (Mass.) and Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), introduced a measure last month demanding Biden order the cancelation of $50,000 in student loan debt for borrowers.
“Education is supposed to be a ladder up, but for too many the burden of student debt has become an anchor holding them down,” Schumer said at the time. “Massive student loan debt is exacerbating the historic and overlapping crises our country is facing, especially for communities of color, which have been hit hardest by the health and economic consequences of COVID-19. Our resolution lays out a way for the president to change that. Canceling student loan debt would help boost our struggling economy and close the racial wealth gap that has persisted for far too long.”
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