“We need American workers, we need this powerful, progressive, thoughtful, caring labor movement to make this the kind of problem that resonates across America,” Chuck said. Schumer during an AFL-CIO roundtable. on student debt on Wednesday, adding that student borrowers “can’t do all the things that people are looking forward to because every month that pesky payment is on their backs.”
“Let’s fight and persist until we succeed in canceling $50,000 in student debt,” Schumer said.
Schumer has long advocated canceling $50,000 student debt for federal borrowers, but Biden delayed that effort in April when he told reporters that $50,000 in aid was not something he was contemplating. Instead, recent reports have suggested he is considering a $10,000 discount for borrowers earning less than $150,000 a year. He will likely announce his final plan in July or August, closer to the expiration of the pause on student loan payments.
For Schumer and many of his fellow Democrats, however, $10,000 in relief is not enough. Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who joined Schumer at Wednesday’s roundtable, also appealed for $50,000 in aid, saying we “have a President of the United States who cares about work…and we’re here today to say, ‘Mr. President, unions care about student debt.’
“Please cancel $50,000 in student loan debt,” Warren added. According to data provided by Warren’s office last month, $50,000 aid would wipe out the balances of 30 million Americans, while Biden’s $10,000 forgiveness plan would do the same for 13 million borrowers. .
Biden has yet to publicly confirm the amount he will rescind, but he told reporters over the weekend that he was close to making a decision, and a further extension of the pause on payments from student loan is “on the table”. Still, Democratic and Republican lawmakers have expressed concerns about the Education Department’s readiness to implement the loan forgiveness given that a decision has yet to be finalized, but the Education Secretary , Miguel Cardona, confirmed that the ministry is “ready to roll” with the president’s plan.
Union leaders, like American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten, hope the plan is to go big on relief.
“Cancelling up to $50,000 in student debt is the only just and moral response to our country’s student debt crisis, and it would be an economic game-changer for educators, nurses, public sector employees and other workers who face enormous economic challenges as a result of their debt,” Weingarten said during the roundtable.