The White House is seeking powers for student loan waivers, says the chief of staff

The President himself is exploring the President’s right to waive student loans – but it remains to be seen how best to consider the financial burden on student borrowers. White House Chief of Staff Ron Klein said Thursday that the president has asked Miguel Cardona to prepare a memo on the president’s legal authority to formulate his debt education.

Biden had previously indicated that he did not have the authority to cancel $ 50,000 in student loan debt, saying he would “not do so” at the townhall in February, with some members of his party and progressives saying. Instead he has expressed interest in canceling up to $ 10,000 and would prefer to work with Congress, but Klein’s remarks on Thursday during a meeting with politicians opened the door.

In response to a question about the decision, White House Chief of Staff Ron Klein said, “We have not made that decision in either way.” Klein noted that Biden has not yet received a memo to make a decision.

“Hopefully, we’ll see that in the next few weeks, and then he’ll turn his attention to the legal authority.” Said Klein.

Student loan debt stands at more than 7 1.7 trillion, according to the Federal Reserve. According to the Department of Education, more than 88 million Americans – about 1 in 1 – have student loans. This is the second largest amount of debt owed to homes in the United States behind mortgages.

On Thursday, Massachusetts Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren – who, along with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and others – unveiled a resolution in February to write off a debt of 50,000 50,000, continued to push Biden to end his “nightmare.”

He said in a press conference, “It is a matter of racial justice to cancel the debt of student loan. It is a matter of economic justice. It is a matter of pay generation justice.” It will hold a hearing on student loan debt later this month.

A report released last month by the JPMorgan Chase Institute found that canceling student loan debt with some income limits would reduce student loan debt by 786 billion. Student debt has also been found to be canceled at Rs.

Unions have called for action on public service loan forgiveness

The Biden administration is also facing pressure from unions on the student loan debt front. On Thursday, a letter from 15 unions representing public servants in Cardona urged them to take immediate action to cancel student loan debts for all public sector employees who have completed a decade or more of service.

The unions – which represent more than 100 million public service workers, including teachers and police officers – are specifically calling on Cardona to begin a 90-day review of the public service loan waiver program and then cancel that debt.

The letter states that public servants were first eligible for debt cancellation under the program in 2017, after which 98% of the applicants were rejected. He blames a combination of factors, including narrow rules, mismanagement by the previous administration, and “widespread abuse” by the student loan industry.

The unions said “this effort is necessary to bring justice to employees working in public who have fallen out of the cracks of our badly broken student loan system.”