Loan payment

Extending the student loan payment break is not the way to go

  • Biden reportedly intends to announce another extension to the student loan payment break this week.
  • The AOC criticized the last-minute extension for creating uncertainty and called for debt cancellation.
  • Democrats called for relief ahead of the previous recess which was due to end on May 1.

New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez isn’t thrilled with the news of another upcoming extension to the student loan payment break.

“I think some people read these extensions as good policy, but I don’t think these people understand the panic and mess that is causing people to get so close to these deadlines just to prolong the uncertainty,” wrote Ocasio-Cortez on Twitter on Tuesday. . “It doesn’t have the effect people think it has. We should cancel them.”

On Tuesday, sources familiar with the matter confirmed to three news outlets that President Joe Biden would announce a further extension of the pause on student loan payments until August 31 this week. This will come just days before the previous break expires on May 1. This follows months of pleas from Democratic lawmakers and advocates urging the president to say borrowers are not ready to be sent back in repayment.

The announcement comes less than a month before borrowers think they should start paying down debt, and Ocasio-Cortez criticized the “limbo and uncertainty” borrowers have experienced so far.

She also voiced the need for Biden to completely cancel student debt — a demand that dozens of Democratic lawmakers have pushed the president to meet. Biden pledged on the campaign trail to approve $10,000 in student loan forgiveness for each federal borrower, but he has yet to deliver on that pledge. The White House has since referred the matter to Congress, repeatedly saying that if lawmakers sent him a bill to cancel student debt, he would be happy to sign it.

Last week, nearly 100 lawmakers called on Biden to not only extend the payments pause, but to forgive “a significant amount” of student debt. His administration has yet to comment on whether that kind of relief is forthcoming, but advocates hope it is. Natalia Abrams, president and founder of the Student Debt Crisis Center, said in a statement Tuesday that “Biden’s piecemeal, short-term approach is not enough to deal with these trying times.”

“The president has the opportunity to take bold, meaningful steps instead of makeshift moves,” Abrams said. “We urge the President to consider the transformative effect permanent student debt cancellation would have for individuals, their families, and the economy.”