Republicans propose an end to student loan forgiveness

During debate on President Biden’s Fiscal 2024 budget request, 34 Republican lawmakers — including both Iowa Senators — proposed a Congressional Review Act resolution to stop the president’s Student Loan Forgiveness plan.


Emily Nyberg

U.S. Department of Treasury is seen in Washington D.C. on Tuesday, March 28, 2023.

Lauren White, Politics Reporter

WASHINGTON — Both Iowa senators signed onto a bill that would overturn President Biden’s student loan forgiveness proposal and end the pause on student loan repayments. 

The Congressional Review Act resolution was introduced on Tuesday and both of Iowa’s Republican Senators, Chuck Grassley, and Joni Ernst, gave their support for the bill. 

In a press release, Grassley said the loan repayment pause has been extended six times since its conception under the Biden administration. He said this was far beyond the original pandemic justification. 

Grassley said this bill takes a step toward restoring common sense to the federal loan process. Additionally, he said, he will work to develop legislative solutions to better financially prepare students for higher education. 

“As with most financial decisions made by this administration, the student loan cancellation plan demonstrates complete budgetary incompetence and is yet another instance of federal overreach,” Grassley said. 

In an interview with Sen. Joni Ernst, said there are constitutional issues surrounding Biden’s original student loan forgiveness plan.

Ernst said she expects the Supreme Court to make a decision on whether or not Biden is able to use his executive powers to further his loan forgiveness plan. 

Overall, Ernst said, Republicans in Congress want to push back to say that the country can not continue with student loan debt just through the president’s executive order. 

“So just simply say we as Congress are not going to allow that any longer. We know that we’re moving on. The COVID pandemic is ending. Title 42 at the border is ending, The President has long said that the COVID Emergency Order is over. So our policies need to reflect that as well,” Ernst said. 

According to Grassley’s press release, Ernst said the student loan forgiveness plan attempts to transfer nearly half a trillion dollars in debt because some Americans choose to avoid paying off their loans. 

“That’s why I’m fighting to stop Biden’s student loan socialism and protect Iowa taxpayers from being forced to foot the bill,” Ernst said in the press release. 

U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona released a statement condemning the lawmakers who signed onto the Republican resolution. He said that Congress is supposed to represent the millions of borrowers who have applied for student debt relief, but proposing to end this relief is disappointing. 

“Instead of working to support hardworking students and borrowers, Republicans in Congress would rather give trillions of dollars in tax breaks to the super-wealthy and the biggest corporations,” Cardona said. “The Biden-Harris Administration will continue to fight to deliver much-needed support to borrowers trying to get back on their feet after the economic crisis caused by the pandemic.”