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Schumer, Warren call on Biden to extend student loan repayment pause, eliminate $50K a person debt

Biden has already extended the pause twice since taking office, but has not acted on the looming Sept. 30 extension.

Updated: July 27, 2021 - 4:51pm

The Facts Inside Our Reporter’s Notebook

Congressional Democrats on Tuesday renewed calls for President Biden to extend the pause on student loan repayments and to cut as much as $50,000 for borrowers' debts, as some Americans continue to struggle with unemployment and debt amid the pandemic.

The request was made by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, of New York; Sen. Elizabeth Warren, of Massachusetts; and Rep. Ayanna Pressley, also of Massachusetts.

They have been calling on Biden to grant the loan forgiveness since he was elected in November. Biden has already extended the pause on the loan repayments twice since taking office in January.

However, he has not indicated whether he will a third time as the Sept. 30 deadline approaches.

"These people live with a sword hanging over their heads. And every day that goes by that sword draws a little closer," said Warren, among the biggest champions on Capitol Hill for the issue.

"This is a matter of economic justice. It is a matter of racial justice," she said. "The president of the United States can remove this sword. The president can prevent this pain."

Roughly 43 million Americans owe the federal government over $1.6 trillion in student debt, according to The Hill newspaper.

Pressley, who like Warren is part of the Democratic Party's progressive wing, said several protections should still be in place because the U.S. is still in the midst of a pandemic with the Delta variant. 

Schumer urged Biden to let the American people recover, adding that he should wait until at least spring 2022 to restart the payments. 

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