Progressive Caucus presses Biden for executive action on student loans, immigration

Associated Press/Andrew Harnik

The Congressional Progressive Caucus (CPC) is renewing its push for President Biden to make use of his executive order pen to enact liberals’ top policy priorities, bypassing the narrow majorities in Congress.

Outlining their agenda on Thursday morning, the group of nearly 100 progressive lawmakers urged the president to act on a variety of areas that would help lower- and middle-income Americans, including decreasing health care premiums, increasing wages and worker protections, expanding rights for immigrants and getting rid of tuition reimbursements for millions suffering to pay back debt from federal student loans. 

They’re also calling for more investments in the so-called care economy, which has seen a rise in demand among essential workers during COVID-19, and to create more balance in the country’s existing tax and economic structures. They would also like to see more substantial commitments to improve the criminal justice system.

CPC members are also demanding that Biden help address climate change by easing the nation’s reliance on fossil fuels, one of the most pressing issues currently plaguing the administration as gas prices continue to soar during Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

“Over the past year, Democrats in Congress and the White House have worked to not only recover from the pandemic and Trump years, but to deliver greater equity and economic security for people across the country,” Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), the chairwoman of the CPC, said in a statement. “Tremendous progress has been made, but that work is far from done.”

“Taken together, these actions will have an immediate and meaningful impact on people’s lives,” she wrote, calling the proposed measures “ambitious, but highly achievable.”

Dozens of progressive activist groups, including some who have pushed the administration to go bigger since the president took office like the Progressive Change Campaign Committee and the Working Families Party, joined the caucus’s pressure campaign for Biden to do more before November.

Tags Joe Biden Pramila Jayapal

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