/Turf War: Pelosi Says Biden Doesn’t Have the Power to Cancel Student Debt
Turf War: Pelosi Says Biden Doesn’t Have the Power to Cancel Student Debt

Turf War: Pelosi Says Biden Doesn’t Have the Power to Cancel Student Debt


Turf War: Pelosi Says Biden Doesn’t Have the Power to Cancel Student Debt

By Nark Morre | NY Post

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi disputed the notion that President Biden has the authority to unilaterally ​cancel students’ federal loans.​
“People think that the president of the United States has the power for debt forgiveness,” Pelosi said during her weekly news conference on Wednesday.
“He does not. He can postpone, he can delay, but he does not have that power. That has to be an act of Congress.”
P​elosi said the subject should be taken up by Congress as a matter of policy.
“That’s a policy discussion,” she said. “But the president can’t do it, so that’s not even a discussion. Not everybody realizes that, but the president can only postpone, delay and not forgive.”
The California Democrat also said she doesn’t think all Americans would be on board for forgiving the debt.
As college students around the country graduate with a massive amount of debt, advocates display a hand-painted sign on the Ellipse in front of The White House to call on President Joe Biden to sign an executive order to cancel student debt on June 15, 2021 in Washington, DC.Advocates display a hand-painted sign in front of The White House to call on President Joe Biden to sign an executive order to cancel student debt on June 15, 2021.Paul Morigi/Getty Images
​”Suppose​, your child at this time does not want to go to college, but you’re paying taxes to forgive someone else’s obligation. You may not be happy about that​,” she said.​​​
A number of Democrats — including Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer​, Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Rep. Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts — have been pressing the president to extend the suspension of student loan payments or cancel up to $50,000 in debt per borrower through executive order.
President Joe BidenPresident Joe Biden does not have the authority to ​cancel students’ federal loans.​Matt Rourke/AP
Americans owe about $1.7 trillion in student loans.
But the moratorium on student loans ends on Sept. 30, and Democratic legislators are urging Biden to extend it to March 31, 2022.
“COVID created severe hardship for some, and threw many others off their stride. To make borrowers repay their debts now, would be unfair, would be harsh, and in many instances would be cruel,” Schumer said during a news conference on Tuesday.
“Tick tock, tick tock,” Warren said, noting that the end of the moratorium is fast approaching.
“The payment pause is running out, and the size of these payments for many borrowers is the size of their rent or car payment,” she said, adding that it will force borrowers to make “hard choices.”
Speaker of the House Nancy PelosiNancy Pelosi said the matter of student loans falls into the hands of Congress.J. Scott Applewhite/AP
“President Biden has an opportunity and a responsibility to address the hurt and harm these communities are feeling by using his executive authority to cancel $50,000 in federal student loan debt,” Pressley said, referring to minority communities.
The White House has said that the president would like to see $10,000 in student debt be canceled and called on Congress to act. Press secretary Jen Psaki said Biden was still looking at his options.
“This includes examining the authorities we have, the existing loan forgiveness programs that are clearly not working as well as they should. This includes borrower defense, total and permanent disability charges. There’s a lot of steps we’re looking at, and we’ll continue to review those and be in touch, of course, with Leader Schumer about our process,” she said last month.
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