More than two years after Joe Biden first floated the idea on the campaign trail, the president finally announced a sweeping student loan forgiveness plan that will relieve the debt burdens of millions of Americans.
Biden said on Wednesday that he would forgive up to $10,000 in student loans for borrowers who make less than $125,000 a year, or households that make less than $250,000. Students who have received Pell Grants can expect up to $20,000 in loan forgiveness. He also announced that the current pause on student loan payments, which was set to lapse on Aug. 31, will continue until January.
In keeping with my campaign promise, my Administration is announcing a plan to give working and middle class families breathing room as they prepare to resume federal student loan payments in January 2023.
I'll have more details this afternoon. pic.twitter.com/kuZNqoMe4I
— President Biden (@POTUS) August 24, 2022
Of the 43 million Americans who have student loan debt, nearly a third owe less than $10,000, and more than half owe less than $20,000, according to the Associated Press. In addition to dramatically decreasing the financial burden for a huge portion of voters, the decision is expected to boost Biden’s support among younger voters, whose opinion of him has recently soured.
Still, the decision has critics on both sides of the aisle. Some progressives, have argued that the $10,000 in forgiveness is not enough. Others find the idea unfair to those who don’t have college degrees, or who have already paid off their debt.