Sen. Burr, Rep. Rouzer oppose President Biden’s proposal to cancel student debt

Sen. Richard Burr (R-NC) and Rep. David Rouzer (R-NC7), who represent southeastern North...
Sen. Richard Burr (R-NC) and Rep. David Rouzer (R-NC7), who represent southeastern North Carolina in Congress, have publicly opposed President Joe Biden's proposal to cancel up to $20,000 of student loan debt for millions of borrowers.(Credit: Pixabay)
Published: Aug. 25, 2022 at 11:20 AM EDT
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WASHINGTON, DC (WECT) - Senator Richard Burr (R-NC) and Congressman David Rouzer (R-NC7) have stated their opposition to President Joe Biden’s plan to erase $10,000 in federal student loan debt for borrowers with incomes below $125,000 a year, or households that earn less than $250,000. The president also proses to cancel an additional $10,000 for borrowers who received federal Pell Grants to attend college.

In an article written for Fox News, Sen. Burr said the “..Biden administration’s policies on federal student loans are only making inflation worse, effectively imposing a tax on the poor to benefit the rich or better off.”

Rep., Rouzer released a statement on the president’s proposal, saying “Welcome to Joe Biden’s liberal utopia. Those who work and pay their bills get punished; those who don’t, get a free ride.  Student debt doesn’t automatically disappear no matter how much debt President Biden unilaterally decides the federal government will forgive.  His action rewards a few at the expense of all others, incentivizes students not to payoff any student debt in the future, will increase college tuition and other fees even more, and add to inflation as well. It’s just another hidden tax imposed by this administration on those who work and pay their bills.”.

According to the administration, the president’s plan would make approximately 43 million people eligible for some student debt forgiveness, with about 20 million having their entire remaining debt erased. The non-profit group Committee for a Responsible Budget, estimates the debt cancellation plan and President Biden’s other action to further pause federal student loan repayments to January 2023, could cost between $400 - $600 million.

The following is the entire article penned by Sen. Burr for FoxNews.com:

Biden’s student loan handout taxes the poor and throws gas on the inflation fire

Biden’s student loan handout plan is Robin Hood in reverse. It take from the poor and gives to the rich

By Sen. Richard Burr | Fox News

August 25, 2022

“Government spending is a major cause of inflation. And inflation is a tax on the poor. This Congress has spent massive amounts of taxpayer dollars in the past two years, leading to historic highs in inflation not seen since the 1970s. The Biden administration’s policies on federal student loans are only making inflation worse, effectively imposing a tax on the poor to benefit the rich or better off.

For the past 29 months, no borrower of federal student loans has been required to make a single payment on those loans, costing the American taxpayer $4.5 billion a month, according to the Congressional Budget Office. That’s added a total of $103.5 billion to our nation’s debt, all so people with college education don’t have to bear the responsibility of paying back loans they previously committed to paying back.

Now, adding additional fuel to the inflation fire, the administration has announced its plainly illegal plan to forgive $10,000 of student loan debt per person for borrowers making under $125,000 per year.

Democrats have touted their student loan schemes as promoting economic equity, but in fact it does the opposite.

Even with an income cap, Biden’s student loan forgiveness proposal gives 69 percent of benefits to borrowers in the top 60 percent of income distribution, according to the University of Pennsylvania Wharton Budget Model.

And the repeated loan repayment pauses have effectively given doctors a $90,000 bonus and lawyers a $55,000 bonus in loan forgiveness, says an analysis by the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget.

Robin Hood famously stole from the rich, the educated, and the aristocracy to give to the poor. The Biden administration is taking from poor and working Americans to give to the highly educated and higher-earning elites.

Spending $4.5 billion a month on people who have the ability and the responsibility to pay back their student loans only further stokes inflation, making the cost of groceries, gas, clothing, and everything we buy more expensive.

During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, a student loan pause may have made sense. But what started as temporary emergency relief has long since morphed into quasi-permanent policy without obvious justification.

Are we still in an economic emergency or not? Biden officials are trying to have it both ways. They like to tout the restoration of jobs lost due to the pandemic as a sign of economic success, and to celebrate reports showing 11.3 million unfilled jobs – two openings for every unemployed person – as a sign of a healthy economy. Yet they also want to rationalize extending the loan repayment pause by claiming it’s still too difficult to find a job.

We already have tools, created by Congress, to help those who can’t afford their loan payments and seek income-based repayments. There are even bipartisan loan repayment solutions, such as the REPAY Act authored by myself and Maine Independent Senator Angus King that would even further simplify loan repayment options for borrowers which could be passed overnight.

Congress never granted the authority to the Executive Branch to forgive mass student debt to the Executive Branch. There is no section of the Higher Education Act that gives discretion to the Education Secretary to come up with a whole new plan for the mass cancellation or forgiveness of debt owed on student loans. The Secretary can forgive debt for individuals in specific circumstances of disability, death, or fraud. But nowhere in federal law has the scheme of mass forgiveness ever been contemplated.

Penn Wharton estimates that the president’s debt “cancellation” policy will cost taxpayers an additional $300 billion, piling up more debt on the shoulders of the taxpayers, and increasing inflationary pressure on the economy.

Lawsuits will quickly follow any declaration by the administration that it has the authority to cancel student loan debt. Courts will intervene and the Administration’s handout to its elite allies will be stopped. So instead of creating even more confusion, the administration should abandon its efforts and work instead with Congress to pass bipartisan legislation to make it easier and simpler to repay student loans.

I’m ready to get to work, Mr. President, Mr. Secretary, are you?”

Copyright 2022 WECT. All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.