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Sanders proposes canceling $1.6 trillion in US student debt

Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersObama book excerpt: 'Hard to deny my overconfidence' during early health care discussions Americans have a choice: Socialized medicine or health care freedom Ocasio-Cortez says Democrats must focus on winning White House for Biden MORE (I-Vt.), a top-tier 2020 presidential candidate, rolled out legislation on Monday to cancel $1.6 trillion in outstanding student debt for 45 million borrowers. 

The legislation, which is being co-sponsored by Reps. Ilhan OmarIlhan OmarProgressive lawmakers call for United Nations probe into DHS 'human rights abuses' Ocasio-Cortez hits Trump for 'disrespect' over calling her AOC during debates Trump says he doesn't actually want Whitmer, Biden and Obama to be locked up despite chants MORE (D-Minn.) and Pramila JayapalPramila JayapalOcasio-Cortez, progressives call on Senate not to confirm lobbyists or executives to future administration posts Pocan won't seek another term as Progressive Caucus co-chair Poll shows Biden leading Trump, tight House race in key Nebraska district MORE (D-Wash.), a co-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, also calls for public universities, community colleges and trade schools to go tuition free. 

The bill will also propose absolving student debt for undergrad and graduate students. 

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A Wall Street tax, which would include taxes on stock transactions, bond trades, and derivatives transactions, will pay for the legislation by collecting $2 trillion over a decade. 

"During the financial crisis, Wall Street received the largest taxpayer bailout in American history. Now it is Wall Street’s turn to help rebuild the disappearing middle class," Sanders tweeted on Monday. 

 

 

News of the legislation was first reported by The Washington Post on Sunday. 

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Sanders's presidential primary opponent and fellow progressive Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenAll fracked up: Biden's Keystone State breakdown What do Google, banks and chicken salad have in common? Final debate: War Admiral vs. Seabiscuit MORE (D-Mass.) announced legislation earlier this month to wipe out nearly all student loan debt in the country. 

Warren's plan would forgive up to $50,000 in student loan debt for anyone with a total household income below $100,000.

Through Warren's plan, a wealth tax would pay for debt forgiveness. 

The two senators' plans to combat student debt could be targeted at the progressive wing's generally young base, grappling with student debt.