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Republicans Want Biden To Reverse The $10,000 Student Debt Cancellation, But We Are Fighting Back

WASHINGTON, DC - AUGUST 25: Student loan debt activists rally o

Student loan debt activists rally outside the White House a day after President Biden announced a plan that would cancel $10,000 in student loan debt for those making less than $125,000 a year in Washington, D.C., on August 25, 2022. | Source: The Washington Post / Getty

President Joe Biden canceled up to $10,000 ($20,000 for Pell Grant recipients) of debt for student loan borrowers who make under $125,000 a year. The pause on student loan repayments has also been extended through the end of the year. As Dream Defenders, we know that this is a critical moment to both celebrate and join the fight to cancel student debt. We aren’t celebrating because $10 thousand was canceled, but because there is more time for people across the country to join the fight for full cancellation. And we need numbers, because, on Sept. 12, 22 Republican governors penned a letter urging Biden to withdraw his student loan forgiveness plan. 

To add insult to injury, these governors are trying to frame student debt cancellation as a class issue, pushing the narrative that relief punishes the poor and rewards the rich. Per usual, they’re pushing these lies to advance their political agenda which centers a strategy to make sure we stay in debt and financial hardship. If they really cared about class disparities, Gov. Ron DeSantis wouldn’t be fighting attempts to relieve housing shortages in Florida cities and Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and his supporters would not be denouncing public education for immigrant children and working-class children. Instead, these Republican governors would have prioritized care for communities hit hardest by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Above all else, the truth is that rich people do not take out student loans, nor do they benefit from student debt cancellation. This is a myth — a lie — we’ve been debunking for years.

Last year, the Roosevelt Institute even published a report offering data and analysis that showed student debt cancellation would most benefit Black and low-income folks, creating more space and opportunity to slash economic and class disparities. 

Republicans are joining forces to stop us because they are terrified that we will win this fight. They know that this fight doesn’t stop with student debt relief. It is about what we all should have access to — a cost of living that doesn’t drown us, healthcare, education, and a legal system that doesn’t put targets on our backs. For too long, our communities have been left to survive impossible circumstances, all so the rich could make an extra dollar. 

WASHINGTON, DC - AUGUST 25: George Washington University studen

Source: The Washington Post / Getty

So while they are fighting to stop us, we are fighting even harder to get what we deserve. We’ve joined the efforts of amazing organizations like The Debt Collective, New Georgia Project, NAACP and so many more in the fight to push for full cancellation. We’re having important conversations with thousands of young Black people and growing this movement.

Up next, Dream Defenders are headed to the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation’s 51st Annual Legislative Conference. We are going because we need as many people to unapologetically fight for what’s right: A debt-free future.

Alisha Cox is an organizer with Dream Defenders, a Florida-based nonprofit organization organizing Black and Brown youth to build power in the state’s communities to advance a new vision.


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