March 25, 2023

  • As Biden made up his mind, Yellen was skeptical about the student loan forgiveness program, according to the New York Times.
  • Educator Jill Biden, who has pushed for tuition-free community colleges, also has reservations.
  • Meanwhile, Kamala Harris is one of the government’s strongest advocates for loan forgiveness.

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen is skeptical of a massive student loan forgiveness program as President Joe Biden mulls the specifics of addressing student debt, First Lady Jill Biden has expressed reservations about such a program, and the Vice President Kamala Harris is one of the government’s staunchest supporters of debt cancellation, According to the New York Times.

While Yellen, a longtime economist who chaired the Federal Reserve from 2014 to 2018, told lawmakers in May that broad student loan relief “could be good for the economy,” she apparently had reservations . According to the report, she argues that a massive debt cancellation could have a huge impact on the economy at a time when inflation has reached its highest level since the early 1980s in recent months.

According to the report, soon after Biden took office last year, he began to hear concerns from economists about a massive forgiveness program. For more than a year, the president has said his administration is looking into the issue, and in his first action in office, he extended student loans for most federal student loan borrowers that the Trump administration began during the coronavirus pandemic. Payment suspended.

Meanwhile, according to the report, Biden remains unsure of what decision to make as he tries to digest insights from individuals who have expressed hesitation about the student loan forgiveness program. In a town hall last February, for example, he was skeptical about his power to cancel as much as $50,000 in student debt — an amount many Democratic lawmakers are pushing.

First lady Jill Biden also has reservations about such a plan, according to the person close to the longtime educator who spoke to The New York Times.

Jill Biden, a community college professor who continued to teach while living in the White House, has been lobbying for years for free community colleges that are expected to be included in the bill formerly known as the Build Back Better Act . (The tuition program was scrapped to reduce billing costs, but it still fell apart after infighting in the party.)

Jill Biden

U.S. President Joe Biden, First Lady Jill Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, right, and U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai walk to the White House Rose Garden on May 17, 2022.

AP Photo/Susan Walsh

With many top Democrats trying to push Biden on the issue, and some House Democrats trying to convince Jill Biden that the student loan cancellation plan being developed won’t dent the president’s support for tuition-free community colleges, According to the Washington Post.

Vice President Kamala Harris — Biden has promised to be a full-blown governing partner during the 2020 presidential campaign — is at the forefront of the Democratic push to cancel student loan debt. In February, Harris instructed her staff to write a memo detailing Biden’s concerns about the loan cancellations, along with the president’s views, according to an administration official who spoke to The New York Times.

Biden has reservations about the plan being seen as favoring “private elite schools,” and Harris’ team sought to counter that hesitancy by noting that “only 0.3 percent of federal loan borrowers attend Ivy League schools.” decision.

Countering criticism that student loan debt should be addressed by Congress — a point other Democratic lawmakers have made — the Harris memo notes that an executive order is already in use that suspends payments on most federal student loans.

Biden announced Wednesday that he will forgive $10,000 of federal student loan debt for borrowers earning less than $125,000 a year and up to $20,000 for those receiving Pell Grants and below the same income threshold. Another key element in the plan is Biden’s passing a new income-driven repayment plan that caps monthly federal student loan repayments at 5 percent of personal income, while his fifth and final Student loan payment suspension extended to December 31.

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