GOP plan to overturn Biden student loan forgiveness could attract Democratic support

Senate Republicans
Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, speaks Wednesday, March 15, 2023, on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/Mariam Zuhaib) Mariam Zuhaib/AP

GOP plan to overturn Biden student loan forgiveness could attract Democratic support

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A Republican plan to strike down President Joe Biden‘s plan to cancel billions in student debt might be attracting Democratic senators.

The plan by Republicans is to use the Congressional Review Act, which allows Congress to strike down regulations within a set time frame, on Biden’s student loan forgiveness. While Biden would almost definitely veto any attempt by Congress to halt his forgiveness plan, the Congressional Review Act would force Democratic lawmakers to pick a side on the legislation, according to the Wall Street Journal.

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“If they’re smart, yes, they will (vote to block the program),” Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA) said.

Republicans in Congress can use the Congressional Review Act after the Government Accountability Office determined that Biden’s plan to forgive up to $20,000 in student loans qualifies as a rule subject to the Administrative Procedures Act and can be overturned through a Congressional Review Act resolution. As a result of this ruling, Sens. Ernst, Bill Cassidy (R-LA), and John Cornyn (R-TX) announced on March 17 they intend to introduce a resolution to overturn Biden’s forgiveness plan.

“President Biden’s student loan scheme does not ‘forgive’ debt. It just transfers the burden from those who willingly took out loans to those who never went to college or sacrificed to pay their loans off,” Cassidy said. “This resolution prevents these Americans, whose debts look different from the favored group the Biden administration has selected, from picking up the bill for this irresponsible and unfair policy.”

Thanks to the GAO’s determination, Senate Republicans are allowed to bring up the measure with only 30 senators signaling their support, with the measure needing only a simple majority to pass. While Democrats still control the Senate after the 2022 midterm elections, not all Democrats are fully on board with the president’s forgiveness plan, including Sens. Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV).

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“I’ll review the full text of the CRA when it is released, but like I said before, I disagree with President Biden’s executive action on student loans because it doesn’t address the root problems that make college unaffordable,” said Cortez Masto.

The Supreme Court is expected to make a ruling on Biden’s plan for student loans by no later than the end of June.

© 2023 Washington Examiner

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