Warren Pitches Loan Forgiveness, Free College Education

Warren Pitches Loan Forgiveness, Free College Education
Susan Dutca-Lovell

Democratic presidential candidate Senator Elizabeth Warren is proposing the elimination of existing college student loan debt for millions of Americans; over 42 million individuals.

According to Warren's proposal, up to $50,000 in student loan debt would be eliminated for every person with a household income up to $100,000, which is roughly more than 95% of Americans. Debt cancellation would also extend to those who earn up to $250,000, with the $50,000 cancellation amount phasing out by $1 for every $3 in income above $100,000. The plan would cost the federal government a one-off price tag of $640 billion, according to the proposal. The cost of the policy would be "more than covered by my Ultra-Millionaire Tax - "a 2% annual tax on the 75,000 families with $50 million or more in wealth," stated Warren.

Unlike other expensive and more "regressive” proposals, Warren's mass student loan forgiveness plan "tapers forgiveness for higher earners," so that it would not give big breaks to upper middle class graduates, including high-earning lawyers, doctors and engineers who racked up six-figure tabs, according to Slate.

While the plan would benefit students with existing student loan debt, it would not be advantageous to students who paid back their loans in full or those who opted to go to less expensive schools to avoid being saddled with student loan debt. While many support the proposal and would welcome the opportunity to attend college at no cost, some users took to social media to express their discontent with the idea, claiming that they did not want to "pay for other people's college or their college debts" or asking that Warren issue refunds to individuals who diligently repaid their student loans. There were also some users who would rather continue to pay off their loans since they "signed the dotted line" and "refuse to let [Warren] rob" them of fulfilling their obligation. In your opinion, do you think that Warren's mass student loan forgiveness plan is a good idea? Why or why not?

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