Home » Legal fight over student debt a prelude to political battle

Legal fight over student debt a prelude to political battle

by The Grio

WASHINGTON (AP) — Facing the possibility that the Supreme Court will reject President Joe Biden’s plan for student loan forgiveness, the White House is aiming to turn the political heat toward Republicans while deflecting criticism from disappointed borrowers.

At stake is the loyalty of young, college-educated voters who are a critical part of the Democratic coalition that Biden is counting on to return him to the White House for a second term. And plenty of people are making sure he doesn’t forget.

“The president still has the responsibility to ensure that we see this become a reality,” said Wisdom Cole, national director of the NAACP Youth and College Division. “There are folks that are still suffering, and we want to ensure that they have the opportunity to see relief.”

White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said Wednesday the president would make it clear to borrowers that “we have your back,” but it’s far from clear that the administration has a backup idea to cancel debt.

“We do not have another plan,” she told reporters. “This is our plan. This is it.”

In arguments this week, the court’s conservative majority appeared deeply skeptical of Biden’s plan, which would slash federal student loan debt burdens through an executive order he signed last year.

In all, up to 43 million Americans could benefit. Out of the 26 million who have applied for relief, 16 million have been approved, according to administration officials. However, all relief has been on hold amid legal challenges from Republicans.

“I’m confident we’re on the right side of the law,” Biden told reporters Wednesday at the White House. “I’m not confident about the outcome of the decision.”

With a Supreme Court ruling expected by summer, the White House is vigorously labeling culprits — and is sure to hit that message even harder if the court kills the…

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