On Wednesday, President Joe Biden vetoed GOP-sponsored legislation to thwart his administration’s plan to offer debt relief to those who borrowed money from the federal government.
“Congressional Republicans led an effort to pass a bill blocking my Administration’s plan to provide up to $20,000 in student debt relief to working and middle class Americans. I won’t back down on helping hardworking folks. That’s why I’m vetoing this bill,” Biden tweeted along with a video.
Congressional Republicans led an effort to pass a bill blocking my Administration’s plan to provide up to $20,000 in student debt relief to working and middle class Americans.
I won’t back down on helping hardworking folks.
That’s why I’m vetoing this bill. pic.twitter.com/ZeYEm4LOjz
— President Biden (@POTUS) June 7, 2023
Republicans who backed the bill, according to Biden, were acting hypocritically since they had gotten loans for their small companies during the Covid-19 outbreak.
“The demand for this relief is undeniable,” Biden said in a message released by the White House. “In less than four weeks — during the period when the student debt relief application was available — 26 million people applied or were deemed automatically eligible for relief. At least 16 million of those borrowers could have received debt relief already if it were not for meritless lawsuits waged by opponents of this program.”
Last Monday, the Senate voted in favor of the bill, primarily along partisan lines. A few moderate senators, including Democrats Joe Manchin of West Virginia, Jon Tester of Montana, and independent Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona, voted with the Republicans to help the bill pass 52-46.
A simple majority of senators was required for the bill to pass and be delivered to Biden. With two Democrats, Jared Golden of Maine and Marie Gluesenkamp Perez of Washington, joining Republicans, the House passed the bill in May by a vote of 218 to 203, primarily along party lines.
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The proposal would have ended the administration’s policy of canceling loans worth up to $10,000 for borrowers whose incomes fall below a specific threshold and up to $20,000 for those who received Pell Grants. After the pandemic-era suspension, it would have also resumed loan payments and interest accrual.
The conservative majority of the Supreme Court is anticipated to rule on two issues involving Biden’s debt relief plan this month. Since the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals placed a temporary stay on the program in October, it has been prohibited.
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