President Joe Biden's plan to reduce some student loan debt could help millions of borrowers, but it could also have dire and unpredictable election consequences.
The uproar that followed the administration's Wednesday announcement shows the potential impact of the high-stakes issue on November's midterm elections
The immediate effect of Biden's executive order, if it survives potential court challenges, would be to ease the debt burden for graduates, who sometimes struggle to make payments.
But no White House decision is made in a vacuum. The debate has been particularly politically charged.
Biden has been under immense pressure from more liberal members of his party since winning the election in 2020, during which he campaigned on some loan waivers.
Biden supporters applauded his decision to cancel a $10,000 loan for those making less than $125,000 a year to improve the lives of middle-class Americans.
Some economists who have worked in the Democratic administration argued that canceling student loans could further increase inflation and increase the national debt.
Americans currently owe approximately $1.62 trillion in federal student loans. Biden's plan would provide relief to 43 million borrowers - most of them.
Individuals with federal student loans who make less than $125,000 per year, or couples with incomes less than $250,000, qualify for forgiveness of up to $10,000.
3 things to know about Biden's student loan debt forgiveness plan
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