Omar, Pressley unveil bill to cancel $30k in student debt per borrower amid coronavirus

Yahoo reports House Representatives Ayanna Pressley (D-MA) and Ilhan Omar (D-MN) are proposing to cancel student debt with new legislation aimed at helping borrowers adversely affected by the coronavirus, or COVID-19.

The legislation, called the Student Debt Emergency Relief Act, proposes the cancellation of at least $30,000 in outstanding debt, tax-free, and proposes that the Education Department (ED) “immediately assume responsibility” for the monthly payments of borrowers who hold federal loans while suspending involuntary collections or garnishments of wages or federal income tax returns amid the crisis.

“During this unprecedented crisis, no one should have to choose between paying their student loan payment, putting food on the table or keeping themselves and their families safe and healthy,” Rep. Pressley said in a statement. “We must prioritize debt cancellation for the 45 million student loan borrowers who are struggling to pay off their debt during this difficult time.”

Democrats including Sens. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Patty Murray (D-WA), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) previously proposed to cancel monthly payments for the duration of the national emergency and asked ED to pay at least $10,000 for all federal loan borrowers.

“Democrats are trying to reduce student loans by $10,000. What the hell has that got to do with the virus?” Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) told Fox News on Sunday. “I’m sure everybody could use more money, but I don’t want to give money to people who have a paycheck. I want to give money to people who have lost their jobs.”

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