Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) along with House Majority Whip Rep. Jim Clyburn (D-SC_ has introduced a bill that would wipe out $50,000 of student loan debt for 42 million Americans.
Here is what the Student Loan Debt Relief Act will do:
– Cancel up to $50,000 in student loan debt for every person with household gross income at $100,000 or less.
– Provide automatic cancellation using data already available to the federal government about household gross income and outstanding student loan debt.
– Allow private student borrowers to receive loan cancellation by converting their private student loans to federal student loans through student loan refinancing.
– Not treat canceled debt as taxable income.
– Provide a year-long freeze on loan payments made by borrowers, wage garnishment by the Department of Education on troubled loans, and interest accrual on student loans while the debt cancellation is being implemented.
-Automatically refinance remaining federal student loans to the interest rates specified in the Bank on Student Emergency Loan Refinancing Act (S. 768/H.R. 1707).
-Allow borrowers to discharge their loans in bankruptcy, similar to the Student Borrower Bankruptcy Relief Act of 2019 (S. 1414/H.R. 2648).
Sen. Warren said in a statement provided to PoliticusUSA, “My very first bill when I got to the Senate was legislation to tackle the growing student debt crisis because I was sick of Washington allowing the wealthy to pay less, while burying tens of millions of Americans in mountains of student loan debt. Since then, Washington has only allowed this crisis to get worse—especially for people of color. Enough is enough. Congressman Clyburn and I have a bill to cancel student debt for millions of Americans and finally end this crisis.”
Rep. Clyburn added, “Crushing student debt has reached crisis levels in America requiring big, bold solutions. I’m proud to be working with Senator Warren to provide most student loan holders relief from this daunting burden and make amends for the failure to ensure that higher education is accessible and affordable to all. Post-secondary education should be the springboard to enable students to achieve their dreams not the impediment that prevents the realization of those goals.”
Eliminating student loan debt would be an economic game-changer for tens of millions of Americans. The bill is a smart way to help spur the economy and hold off the looming Trump recession that is coming. The Trump economy has been great for rich people and corporations, but everyone else has suffered.
Warren and Clyburn’s bill is the kind of bold action that will become law if Democrats keep the House and win back the Senate and White House in 2020.
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