The goal of total student debt cancellation will require long term, sustained action over many years. I think it is a mistake to get too excited about the bones the Biden administration has been throwing to borrowers. I know we are all desperately looking for glimmers of hope here, but President Biden and the current leaders of the Democratic Party establishment are not our friends and never will be. Full debt cancellation will require a new presidential administration and congress that we help to get elected. Period
Biden’s approach up to now has been to offer piecemeal fixes to a broken system (in the same way that Obama used ACA to try and fix a broken healthcare system). These fixes feel nice in the short term, but they end up preserving and prolonging a broken system that needs to be thrown out entirely. In many ways, this makes the Democrats’ incremental approach to fixing these problems worse than the do nothing approach that Republicans would likely offer.
If you read Rep. Tony Cardenas’ comments closely, I think it’s not hard to conclude that Biden will likely offer some limited form of means-tested undergraduate loan forgiveness, not universal forgiveness. See quotes from CBS article below, which have largely been parroted by other major news outlets. I supply my emphasis in bold:
Rep. Tony Cardenas, Democrat of California, who attended the meeting, said the president is open to forgiving debt for college students regardless of whether they attended a public or private institution.
Cardenas said he reiterated to Mr. Biden that the Hispanic Caucus supports executive action that would forgive at least $10,000 in college debt if Congress can’t pass legislation doing so.
In response, Cardenas said the president “smiled and said, ‘You’re going to like what I do on that, I’m looking to do something on that and I think you’re going to like what I do.’”
“We’re looking at it from a vantage point of if they needed help getting through college and they took on debt, it shouldn’t matter,” Cardenas added.