President Joe Biden’s recent announcement that millions of Americans could see up to $20,000 in student loan debt wiped out was promptly met with praise from many on the left — even if it did not go as far as some progressives would have preferred.
Plenty of critics, however, wondered whether such a proposal was fair to the many other Americans who either paid off their student loans or opted to enter the workforce or the military after high school. Furthermore, politicians and constitutional scholars on both sides of the aisle expressed doubt that the president even has the authority to make such a sweeping declaration.
Nevertheless, Biden and top officials in his administration issued statements throughout the week dismissing such criticism and portraying student loan amnesty as an act of compassion that would somehow benefit the entire nation’s economy.
As it turns out, a large number of the staffers working under the president are likely going to be among the direct beneficiaries of his big-government largesse.
According to public documents, roughly 20% of all current White House aides have reported outstanding student loan debts. This amounts to about 30 staffers and nearly $5 million in combined debt.
This statistic is in line with the norm throughout the nation’s capital, where the average personal unpaid student loan amount is just under $55,000. Within the Department of Education, which approved Biden’s student loan forgiveness plan, records indicate that 41 top staffers could see a combined $512,646 of their unpaid debt erased.
Across much of the rest of the country, however, taxpayers who do not benefit from Biden’s handout are outraged that they are now on the hook to bail out borrowers who benefited from a college education that they could not afford.
It’s unfair to force a truck driver to pay a loan for someone who got a PhD in gender studies.
Taxpayers shouldn’t be footing the bill for student loan relief and Biden’s order isn’t constitutional.
If anything, universities handing out worthless degrees should be on the hook. pic.twitter.com/wZuH6GxPII
— Ron DeSantis (@GovRonDeSantis) August 25, 2022
Their frustration has been echoed by a number of prominent conservatives — and even a few liberals — who warn that the plan is likely to make the current rate of inflation even worse.
Jason Furman, who chaired the Council of Economic Advisers during the Obama administration, offered a harsh assessment of the toll that Biden’s “reckless” executive action would have on the nation’s economy.
He said that the president has poured “roughly [a] half trillion dollars of gasoline on the inflationary fire that is already burning,” adding: “Doing it while going well beyond one campaign promise ($10K of student loan relief) and breaking another (all proposals paid for) is even worse.”
The political and fiscal fallout from Biden’s latest decree is likely to be swift and severe, but at least dozens of political aides and staffers in the White House have something to celebrate this week.