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Tipsheet

GOP Governors Demand Biden 'Withdraw' His Student Debt Bailout Plan Immediately

AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta

Weeks after President Biden announced his administration would use dubious legal authority to "forgive" a vast swath of student debt — that is, force taxpayers to foot the bill — the White House has, somewhat oddly, not talked much about the executive action. 

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If the West Wing won't talk about it, however, Republican governors are more than happy to. In fact, 22 of them are in a letter to President Biden made public on Monday declaring they "fundamentally oppose" Biden's plan "to force American taxpayers to pay off the student loan debt of an elite few—a plan that is estimated to cost the American taxpayer more than $2,000 each or $600 billion total, a price the people of our states cannot afford."

The letter continues by demanding Biden "withdraw your student loan plan immediately" while explaining why Democrats' plan is fundamentally unfair and antithetical to their promises to help Americans:

Only 16-17 percent of Americans have federal student loan debt, and yet, your plan will require their debts be redistributed and paid by the vast majority of taxpayers. Shifting the burden of debt from the wealthy to working Americans has a regressive impact that harms lower income families. Borrowers 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. What’s more, the top 20 percent of earning households hold $3 in student debt for every $1 held by the bottom quintile, generating a lopsided reality where the wealthy benefit at the expense of the working. Simply put, your plan rewards the rich and punishes the poor. 

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Led by Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds, other GOP state executives joining the letter are Governors Kay Ivey (AL), Mike Dunleavy (AK), Doug Ducey (AZ), Asa Hutchinson (AR), Ron DeSantis (FL), Brian Kemp (GA), Brad Little (ID), Larry Hogan (MD), Mike Parson (MO), Greg Gianforte (MT), Pete Ricketts (NE), Chris Sununu (NH), Doug Burgum (ND), Mike DeWine (OH), Kevin Stitt (OK), Henry McMaster (SC), Kristi Noem (SD), Bill Lee (TN), Greg Abbott (TX), Spencer Cox (UT), and Mark Gordon (WY). 

Blasting the Biden administration's ignorance of personal responsibility, the letter notes that attending college is not the right choice for everyone, but it is a decision by "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."

Importantly, the Republican state leaders point out that a "high-cost degree is not the key to unlocking the American Dream—hard work and personal responsibility is" and many borrowers "worked hard, made sacrifices, and paid off their debt" while many others "chose hard work and a paycheck rather than more school and a loan."

Highlighting the inanity of Biden and Democrats' "equity" agenda, the governors explain that "Americans who did not choose to take out student loans themselves should certainly not be forced to pay for the student loans of others." Yet, thanks to President Biden's desperate attempt to shore up some support for his party ahead of the midterms, that's exactly what's happening. 

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What's more, amid 40-year-high inflation created by Biden's tax-and-spend "Build Back Better" economic agenda, the president's student debt bailout would make inflation — you guessed it — even worse. 

"Your plan will encourage more student borrowing, incentivize higher tuition rates, and drive-up inflation even further, negatively impacting every American," the governors' letter explains of what should be Econ 101 that goes continually unheeded by the White House. It's not rocket science that raising demand increases inflation. "Rather than addressing the rising cost of tuition for higher education or working to lower interest rates for student loans, your plan kicks the can down the road and makes today’s problems worse for tomorrow’s students," the letter adds.

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