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Changing majors: Biden revamps, scales down student debt schemes

Changing majors: Biden revamps, scales down student debt schemes

Washington Examiner

Haisten Willis, White House Reporter
November 10, 2023
It might take a semester-long course to explain all of President Joe Biden‘s student loan plans.
Since the Supreme Court struck down its $400 billion student debt transfer, the Biden White House has been hard at work regrouping and attacking the issue on multiple fronts. So many, in fact, that it can be difficult even for professional loan forgiveness followers to keep up.
“I find it very hard to track what is happening and how they’re doing it,” said Neal McCluskey, director of the Cato Institute’s Center for Educational Freedom. “So I imagine that the average person is unable to follow any of this. I don’t know whether that is intentional or not.”
Biden announced the headline-grabbing original plan in August 2022, six weeks before the midterm elections. The plan was blocked by a federal judge just days after the election and ultimately struck down by the Supreme Court in June 2023.
Biden administration officials repeatedly pledged that there was no Plan B if the high court overturned the program, yet moved swiftly following the legal setback to announce future moves.
One of the most significant is the Saving on a Valuable Education, or SAVE, plan, which will greatly reduce the amount that most people who take out student loans repay. In fact, most loans would be written off completely after no more than 20 years. Critics of the plan, including Brookings Institution scholar Adam Looney, say it is untargeted and provides the greatest benefit to loanees who find the least career success.
“Want a free ride to college?” Looney wrote in his analysis. “You can have one, but only if you study cosmetology, liberal arts, or drama, preferably at a for-profit school.”
But that plan is for future borrowers, not current ones. For that, the Department of Education announced, beginning the week that loan payments restarted following a 3-1/2-year pause, a new series of loan forgiveness initiatives.
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