Should Biden cancel student loans?


As the Biden administration settles into the White House and wraps up their transition with the Trump administration, people all over the United States prepare for what is to come over the next four years of Biden’s presidency.

President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris introduced multiple new policies and ideas as they campaigned for their spot in the White House. One of the many policies that Biden has especially been passionate about is the cancelling of student loans.

Now, don’t get too excited. Cancelling student loans does not mean that they will be gone forever for every person in the U.S. According to Education Data, “student loan debt in the United States totals $1.68 trillion and grows over 6 times faster than the nation’s economy.”

Cancelling $1.68 trillion would be nearly impossible for the government to achieve. And while it would be ideal for many students across the country, there are still cons among the pros that come with cancelling student loans.

Let’s start off with the cons. One of the large downsides of cancelling all student loans is that it only benefits roughly 20% of the U.S population. According to Forbes, only 45 million out of 250 million adults in the U.S are student loan borrowers. That means that for the remaining 205 million adults, they aren’t getting any sort of relief. In a time like COVID-19, where millions of people are losing jobs and struggling to pay for simple things like groceries and rent, relief should be provided to more than just 20% of the U.S population.

Another downside of cancelling all student loans is that it benefits those who attended graduate school and have a higher income: Many of those who attend law school, medical school, dental school, etc. do get paid more after they graduate. Of course, not every single person who attends graduate school will earn a greater income than someone with a bachelor’s degree, but the chances are much higher. Therefore, those with a lower income or degree should get more relief than those who have higher degrees, in order to fairly support everyone with student loans.

However, cancelling student loans can also be very beneficial in multiple ways. For starters, in a time with COVID-19, many college students are struggling to find jobs, so providing some sort of relief or even cancelling their loans overall can be very useful. According to Education Data, there are around 44.7 million student borrowers, and on average each student owes around $37,000.

As of now, President Joe Biden has been on board to provide relief to many people who struggle with student loans. Other politicians such as Senator Elizabeth Warren have also supported the cancellation of all student debt; however, Biden has focused on providing around $10,000 in relief to each person struggling with student loans.

Personally, I believe this is the best way to approach student loan relief. To cancel $1.68 trillion seems very unrealistic to me; an amount of money that large would be hard to find, especially as our country suffers through COVID-19.

However, providing $10,000 takes away nearly ⅓ of a student’s average loan debt, which is a significant amount. During a time where millions are losing jobs, we need to find a way to support everyone in the United States, not just 20% of adults. By providing a small portion of relief to student loans, and continuing to give stimulus checks to all adults in the United States, we can help stimulate the economy while supporting as many people as possible during this unprecedented time.