Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer is pushing presumptive President-elect Joe Biden to forgive up to $50,000 in student debt per borrower, claiming Biden doesn’t need Congress in order to make the call.
“We have come to the conclusion that President Biden can undo this debt, can forgive $50,000 of debt the first day he becomes president,” Schumer said Monday.
“You don’t need Congress; All you need is the flick of a pen,” he claimed.
.@SenSchumer stepping up pressure today on Biden to use executive action to cancel $50K of student loan debt per borrower — and to pick an education secretary who will do that.
“You don’t need Congress,” Schumer said. “All you need is the flick of a pen.” pic.twitter.com/gh0eRQbJfu
— Michael Stratford (@mstratford) December 7, 2020
If the presumptive president-elect was able to act without legislation, over 40 million Americans could see their debts reduced or eliminated overnight, CNBC reported.
That would be harder to do if Congress had to agree to forgive the loans, but it is unclear at this time if Biden intends to do so.
At a Nov. 16 news conference, Biden said that student loan borrowers are “in real trouble,” according to a transcript from Rev.
“They’re having to make choices between paying their student loan and paying the rent, those kinds of decisions. It should be done immediately,” he said.
Biden also said he would forgive $10,000 in student debt for borrowers, and the rest of the debt for people who attended public colleges or historically Black universities and earn less than $125,000 a year.
Schumer wants Biden to forgive the loans and has also called for eliminating the tax liability that results from loan forgiveness, according to Forbes.
The New York Democrat believes Biden has the authority to use an executive order to cancel federal student loans under the Higher Education Act of 1965.
Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren is also calling for Biden to forgive $50,000 in student loans and introduced a resolution with Schumer before the 2020 Election for the next president to forgive student loan debt.
Warren has said forgiving the loans would be the “single biggest stimulus we could add to the economy.”
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez also claimed Congress is not needed to make the call and Biden just needs a “push” to do it.
“It’s not a pipe dream at all,” the New York Democrat said, according to Fox News.
“And most importantly, is that it can be done by executive order, which means that Biden would not need Mitch McConnell or the Republican Senate to forgive people’s student loans. The key is that we need to push him.”
Over 230 organizations and non-profits, including Americans for Financial reform and the NAACP, signed a Nov. 18 letter calling on Biden to cancel student loans on his presumptive first day, CNBC reported.
It is still unclear if the president has the authority to make such a move without Congressional approval.
“Using an executive order to forgive federal student loans will likely be met with a lawsuit and preliminary injunction, and eventually fail,” higher-education expert Mark Kantrowitz told CNBC.
“Also, trying that route immediately upon taking office would block any attempt at working with Congress in a bipartisan manner.”
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.