Biden to review his authority to cancel student debt - WH

Joe Biden wearing a suit and tie

Taylor Glascock for CNN

"I'm prepared to write off $10,000 debt, but not 50 [thousand]", he said, "because I don't think I have the authority to do it" through signing an executive order. The Act was reauthorized several times (and amended) over the ensuing decades. "We will keep fighting".

Biden's comments at the CNN town hall drew the ire of progressives and elected Democrats on Wednesday.

"If we could persuade the President, we can do this real fast", the Massachusetts Democrat said.

During a town hall on Tuesday (February 16) night, Joe Biden was asked if he would pledge to cancel $50,000 in student loan debt. "What will you do to make that happen?"

The dispute among Democrats highlights an early intra-party rift opening under the new administration over a liberal policy proposal.

She offered practical advice on how to contact a member of Congress and ask about the issue.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) attending a vote on January 9, 2020.

"Who cares what school someone went to?" Biden has stated "he doesn't favor $50,000 in student loan relief without limitation".

While Biden presented his higher-education proposals as sensible and pragmatic alternatives to unilateral debt cancellation-which he falsely insisted he doesn't have the authority to carry out-racial justice activist Bree Newsome argued that "there's nothing practical about Biden's stance on student loan forgiveness".

"We've got the *Senate Majority Leader* on board to forgive $50k", said Ocasio-Cortez, who is a potential primary threat to Schumer in his reelection bid next year. "Biden's holding back, but numerous arguments against it just don't hold water on close inspection", she said.

On Wednesday, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren said in a statement that the administration does have "broad authority" to provide relief and added: "An ocean of student loan debt is holding back 43 million borrowers and disproportionately weighing down Black and Brown Americans".

"Obviously that's a review that would need to take place".

If I were Joe, I'd rely on my lawyers for legal advice and not a former cocktail waitress. "There is a policy consideration and once that is concluded he will decide a path forward".

JEN PSAKI: He said previously that relief above $10,000 should be targeted based on the borrower's income, based on the kind of debt in question- public schools versus private schools, graduate schools versus undergraduate.

The president said he doesn't want to forgive the debts of people who attended elite schools such as Harvard and Yale who often go on to make high salaries and added that he would instead prioritize childhood education for disadvantaged communities.
The survey found that 40 percent of Black voters would not vote for a candidate who opposes canceling student loan debt.

She followed up Wednesday by providing a step-by-step explanation to her millions of Twitter followers on how to call members of Congress and voice support for student loan forgiveness. But a later tweet from the press secretary suggested that the administration was open to reviewing an executive option.

He argues that the $50,000 figure for loan forgiveness could go a long way towards reducing the inequalities in a system that both forces Black families to take out more debt, and to have more difficulty paying those loans back. Federal student loan borrowers won't have to make payments until October 1 at the earliest.

Tuesday, Biden expressed his support for making community college free and allowing families earning less than $125,000 to send their kids free of charge to state schools.

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