“You know how I know that President Biden has the power to #CancelStudentDebt? Because he’s already used it. So did President Obama, and so did Donald Trump,” Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) tweeted.
“It’s time for the administration to cancel $50,000 in student debt and give relief to people who are getting crushed,” she added, repeating the staple of her failed presidential campaign:
During her presidential campaign, Warren vowed to cancel the bulk of student loan debt via executive action on the first day of her presidency, promising to “direct the Secretary of Education to use their authority to begin to compromise and modify federal student loans consistent with my plan to cancel up to $50,000 in debt for 95 percent of student loan borrowers (about 42 million people).”
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) also took to social media to criticize President Biden, urging him to use his executive authority “now.”
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“Biden needs to lean on his executive authority now. He has been delaying and underutilizing it so far. There is an enormous amount he can do on climate, student debt, immigration, cannabis, health care, and more,” she said.
“Time is running out – we need to move and use alternative paths,” the far-left congresswoman continued:
“With BBB delayed, Child Tax Credits will expire and student loans will restart within a matter of weeks. Working families could lose thousands of $/mo just as prices are rising,” she said in another post. “That alone is reason for @POTUS to act on student loans ASAP – w/ either moratorium or cancellation”:
“The fact that Biden has the power to provide student debt relief to millions, had to be forced into extending the eviction moratorium,& has yet to aggressively campaign against the filibuster shows us he has more power than he’s using,” she said the day prior, calling on Biden to “take off the gloves & govern”:
Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-WA), chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, also made a plea over the weekend.
“Today would be a perfect day for @POTUS to cancel at least $50,000 of student loan debt per borrower – before crushing payments restart in 44 days. All it takes is a signature,” she said on Sunday:
The Biden White House made it clear this month that the president had no intention of re-extending the program that suspended student loan payments, which began under former President Donald Trump.
“We will engage directly with federal student loan borrowers to ensure they have the resources they need and are in the appropriate repayment plan,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters.
“We’re still assessing the impact of the Omicron variant. But a smooth transition back into repayment is a high priority for the administration,” she said.
Student loan payments resume February 1, 2022.
Biden admitted at the beginning of the year that he had no intention of canceling up to $50,000 in student loan debt, to the dismay of his Democrat colleagues.
Biden is expected to deliver a speech on the omicron variant on Tuesday. It remains unclear if suspension of student loan payments is on his radar due to the variant, although Democrats are now warning that another round of federal coronavirus stimulus aid may be necessary moving forward.