Biden Urged by Democrats to Keep Student Loan Freeze Until Year’s End

A coalition of House Democrats is urging President Biden to extend the national student loan payment standstill at least through the end of 2022.

A band of 43 Congressional Democrats, spearheaded by Pennsylvania Representative Conor Lamb, wrote to Biden on Monday.

They urged him to maintain the “progress” achieved by Democrats in the aftermath of the COVID-19 outbreak by prolonging the pause.

Otherwise, Democrats claim the quick shift to repayment would risk borrowers being overdue or defaulting on their loans.

Details of the Letter

“We appreciate your efforts to lessen the effects of the coronavirus outbreak,” the members of Congress wrote to Biden.

“We must build on this significant success by assisting regular Americans in overcoming the pandemic’s obstacles.”

“American families, neighborhoods, and the economy have made significant strides toward overcoming COVID-19, the virus continues to have an impact on the community.”

They refrenced a document from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities that asserted 20 million households lacked sufficient food and ten million homes were behind on rent. 

“Joblessness is greater than it was two years ago; households are seeing huge increases in the cost of household items, food, and energy,” the Democrats stated.

“As a result, we believe the administration’s moratorium on student loan payments and interest accrual should be extended.”

“We feel that another extension, at the very least through the end of this year, is warranted.”

The Democrats referenced a 2020 Department of Education assessment, asserting the shift back to repayment would be hard for the department and its loan companies, as well as for borrowers.

Still Applicable Two Years Later

According to the Democrats, such conditions remained applicable to borrowers two years later.

“Reneging on federal student loans has substantial implications for borrowers, including jeopardizing Social Security retirement benefits, being sued, having tax refunds withdrawn, and having salaries garnished, to name a few.”

“This is a regrettable reality for people who have suffered economically and otherwise, due to the pandemic. We believe these repercussions can be reduced via an extended suspension of payments.”

The letter ended, “Millions of borrowers have benefited from the payment suspension.”

“While progress has been achieved, we feel it is critical to continue working to lessen the pandemic’s ongoing impact on families across the country. As a result, we respectfully urge that you continue to delay student loan payments until the end of this year.”

The Biden presidency already indicated it intends to extend the freeze once again before it expires on May 1. This month, the Department of Education instructed federal student loan servicers not to mail debt notifications to borrowers.

Biden’s chief of staff, Ron Klain, informed the left-wing podcast “Pod Save America” that Biden was resuming payments while awaiting a decision on debt cancellation.

“The president will consider what should be done about student debt before the pause ends, or he will prolong it,” Klain said.