Texas governor signs letter asking President to abandon student loan forgiveness plan

Texas governor signs letter asking President to abandon student loan forgiveness plan

Isabel Webb Carey
Isabel Webb Carey
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September 14, 2022

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott signed a letter Monday asking President Joe Biden not to go through with his student loan forgiveness plan alongside 21 other Republican governors.

“As governors, we support making higher education more affordable and accessible for students in our states, but we fundamentally oppose your plan to force American taxpayers to pay off the student loan debt of an elite few,” the letter reads. It goes on to argue that debt relief would harm the working class, and that those “with the most debt, such as $50,000 or more, almost exclusively have graduate degrees, meaning hourly workers will pay off the master’s and doctorate degrees of high salaried lawyers, doctors, and professors.”

Announced in late August, Biden’s plan to cancel up to $20,000 in federal student loan debt automatically disqualifies anyone earning over $125,000. For those under the threshold, a maximum of $10,000 of student loans can be forgiven, unless they are recipients of Pell Grants, a program intended for low-income students. These individuals may have up to $20,000 of student loans forgiven.

Hardline Republicans such as Florida’s Ron DeSantis, Georgia’s Brian Kemp and Missouri’s Mike Parson were among the other signatories, though they were also joined by moderates. In their letter, they argue that it is unfair to students who have paid off their loans and fearing any further surge in cash could exacerbate the nation’s high inflation.

“College may not be the right decision for every American, but for the students who took out loans, it was their decision: able adults and willing borrowers who knowingly agreed to the terms of the loan and consented to taking on debt in exchange for taking classes. A high-cost degree is not the key to unlocking the American Dream — hard work and personal responsibility is,” the governor wrote. “Simply put, your plan rewards the rich and punishes the poor.”

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Isabel Webb Carey

Isabel Webb Carey

Isabel Webb Carey attends the University of Texas at Austin in the Plan II Honors Program with a certificate in Core Texts and Ideas. Her interests include education, local governance, sustainability, and equity. Isabel enjoys dancing, hiking, and live music. She is also a staff writer for the Texas Orator. Email her at isabelwebbcarey@gmail.com
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