Education Department officers are reportedly calling on President Joe Biden to increase the freeze on federal student loan funds and 0 curiosity accrual, sources conversant in the inner dialogue advised Politico.
An administration official advised the publication that the division “is working to ensure that struggling borrowers are supported when payments are lifted.”
“The pause was designed to support borrowers impacted by the pandemic and its economic impact,” the administration official stated in an announcement. “Every day we are making progress with respect to pandemic and economy is recovering. We appreciate that there are still impacts for individual borrowers/families.”
The division officers add to the slew of congressional Democrats and student loan advocacy teams urging the Biden administration to increase the fee pause to assist alleviate the monetary burden amid the financial disaster triggered by the coronavirus pandemic.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY.) and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), lively proponents of widespread student loan cancellation, led a bunch of greater than 60 Democrats who wrote to the president final month, pushing him to increase the fee pause till the top of March 2022 or till the pandemic is over, relying on which one is longer.
“We’re calling on the administration to extend the pause on student loan payments to help support Arizona families as we continue our coronavirus recovery,” Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), one of many Democrats who signed the letter, tweeted on Tuesday. “Extending the current pause on federal student loan payments will provide relief to Arizonans and help them continue to recover from the coronavirus recession.”
And over 125 organizations, together with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), despatched a letter to Biden to uphold his promise of mitigating the student loan disaster and lengthen the fee pause.
Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.) and Rep. Bobby Scott (D-Va.) additionally lately wrote to the president as they joined the pause push, arguing that the extension would enable the division to supply debtors “with an effective re-entry for repayment.”
It’s unclear, nevertheless, whether or not the White House helps the extension effort, as some advisers have voiced help of it, whereas others argue that it may intervene with the administration’s mission to offer a easy path towards financial restoration.
Education Secretary Miguel Cardona has not explicitly supported or deflected the trouble, although he did notice at a Senate listening to final month that, “Extending the pause is something that we have had conversations about.”
The Cares Act handed in March of final yr first suspended all federal student loan funds and curiosity, and former President Donald Trump pushed the aid deadline twice in 2020. Once Biden took workplace, he additionally prolonged the pause till the top of September 2021.
Rachel Bucchino is a reporter on the National Interest. Her work has appeared in The Washington Post, U.S. News & World Report, and The Hill.