The announcement from President Biden that, via executive order, the administration would transfer hundreds of billions of dollars from taxpayers to those with student loans has caused many Americans from all walks of life to muse about what being a fiscal steward means for themselves individually and what it means for the federal government. What we do know is the plan amounts to another harmful, politically motivated policy that will push already-skyrocketing higher education costs even higher. Student debt “forgiveness” is just another example of this administration’s long track record of pouring taxpayer dollars into a broken system under the guise of helping people but inevitably making things worse. Akash Chougle, Americans for Prosperity’s Vice President, recently had an op-ed published in Inside Sources and wrote:
“All of this [student loan ‘forgiveness’ is unjust, but the most poisonous part of the plan is that it would entrench higher education’s flawed status quo, which has saddled 40 million people with $1.6 trillion in student debt. It is no accident that tuition skyrocketed as the government’s role in paying the cost of college expanded. Higher education institutions have no reason to rein in costs as long as they see government as a guaranteed payer. Moreover, there is little accountability for how those taxpayer-funded tuition dollars are spent and whether those expenditures benefit student outcomes. […] Debt forgiveness undermines any incentive for students to borrow responsibly or choose a major that will adequately prepare them for the workforce and equip them to pay back their loans.”
What Americans should also be considering, in addition to the policy implications of student loan “forgiveness” is the procedure by which this plan was derived. It exposes the deep rot within out national government. President Biden used executive actions to unveil his three-part plan on student loan policy, and did so under the purview of emergency powers, using the HEROES Act of 2003, which was enacted in response to the Global War on Terrorism. It was set to expire in 2005, but Congress extended it and ultimately made it permanent in 2007. In addition, the administration has clearly overstepped into the legislative powers of appropriations. The plan to forgive $10,000 per borrower, would cost more than $320 billion and worsen inflation by adding to consumer demand that the economy is already unable to meet. As Akash noted, “The Biden Administration’s plan for student loan ‘forgiveness’ is nothing but a transfer of the bill to responsible taxpayers who either already worked hard to pay off their loans or don’t have them […]. These are exactly the kind of big-spending, big-government policies that destroy an economy and divide Americans in the process.”
We must each renew our commitment to be the watchdogs for the treasure of future generations. I’m Ashley Klingensmith, State Director with Americans for Prosperity-PA. Keep up to date with what our team is working on under the domes in D.C. and Harrisburg by liking us on Facebook by searching @PAAFP and by following us on Twitter by searching @AFPPennsylvania.
Ashley Sisca Klingensmith | State Director | Americans for Prosperity – PA