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A federal judge signed off on a settlement giving 200,000 student-loan borrowers $6 billion in debt relief last year. In January, three companies requested a stay on the relief, citing reputational harm the settlement brought them. Borrowers in the case recently filed a motion opposing the stay due to the harm postponing the relief would bring. Some of the borrowers who were set to see debt forgiveness attended colleges run by those companies, which were among many named in the November settlement. One hundred and forty-four borrowers have submitted declarations attesting to the harm a stay would cause them."
One of the cases involves two student-loan borrowers who sued because they didn't qualify for the full $20,000 amount of relief. "Extra breathing room for millions of Americans is on hold because of lawsuits brought by opponents of this Administration's student debt relief plan," the White House wrote on Twitter this week. Here are some standouts from the Job Creators Network's argument on why Biden's student-loan forgiveness should be blocked. The debt-relief plan demonstrates "gross over-inclusiveness"Leading up to the announcement of Biden's debt relief, many advocates and Democratic lawmakers were urging him to make the relief as expansive as possible, without any thresholds. "There was a national emergency that impacted millions of student borrowers," the official said.
The Federal Reserve raised interest rates 25 basis points on Wednesday, a slowdown from December. Fed Chair Powell said the increases will continue, and it's better to do too much than too little to fight inflation. On Wednesday, the Federal Reserve announced it's raising interest rates 25 basis points — a slowdown from December's 50 basis point increase. And Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen recently said the promising economic data shouldn't lead people to downplay the risk of a recession. "Chair Powell should pause his interest rate hikes and remember his dual mandate: fight inflation without throwing millions out of work."
SoFi CEO Anthony Noto told Yahoo Finance he doesn't support broad plans to cancel student debt. The student-loan payment pause is set to end 60 days after June 30, or 60 days after the lawsuits blocking the relief are resolved. He's not a fan of broad proposals like President Joe Biden's plan to cancel up to $20,000 in student debt for federal borrowers making less than $125,000. But those... that are capable of paying need to be put back into payment, and they shouldn't have their loans forgiven either." Noto had previously expressed his belief that the student-loan payment pause should not continue for all borrowers.
The Federal Reserve raised interest rates 25 basis points on Wednesday. This announcement comes on the heels of data showing inflation cooling down in the country. On Wednesday, the Federal Reserve announced it is raising interest rates by 25 basis points, marking a slowdown from its December hike of 50 basis points. The Fed's continued actions to slow its interest rate hikes is a promising sign for those concerned about a recession this year. But some Democratic lawmakers have been cautioning Powell on the risks of continuing to raise interest rates because it could lead to a recession.
The CFPB proposed a rule to crack down on credit card late fees, saving consumers up to $9 billion a year. This follows Biden's announcement last year of a plan to crack down on junk fees. On Wednesday, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) proposed a new rule to limit credit card late fees that the agency estimates cost Americans $12 billion each year. "Today's proposed rule seeks to save families billions of dollars and ensure the credit card market is fair and competitive." The CFPB's proposal on credit card late fees are part of the rulemaking process which includes a public comment period, and an exact implementation date has not yet been set.
The White House announced it's ending the COVID-19 national emergency declaration in May. Biden's student-debt relief plan uses the HEROES Act, which allows relief in connection with a national emergency. But the White House said the legality of the debt relief will still stand. "There was a national emergency that impacted millions of student borrowers," the official continued. Still, Biden's administration has long maintained that this debt relief plan is intended to remedy the economic consequences of the pandemic, which can last far longer than an emergency declaration.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren said there are other tools to carry out student-debt relief if the Supreme Court strikes it down. But she said a Plan B should not be the focus right now, and she supports the legality of Biden's plan. Warren had previously advocated for using the Higher Education Act, instead of the HEROES Act, to cancel student debt. Both of them argue that the president does not have the authority to enact broad debt relief without Congressional approval. "If the Supreme Court applies the law as it is written, then that cancellation will go through.
The Federal Reserve is expected to raise interest rates again this week. Janet Yellen said given the continued hikes, the "risk of recession" persists. That's why estimates suggest the Fed will slow its interest rate hikes again in February. "Further interest rate hikes will only make it more expensive for small businesses to fund their operations. Millions of American jobs are at risk with the Fed's extreme rate hikes," Warren wrote on Twitter earlier this month.
A White House official told reporters that Biden is not "deliberating or considering" a backup plan to cancel student debt. This comes as the Supreme Court is taking up two lawsuits next month that are currently blocking Biden's broad relief. The White House maintains confidence in its authority, but advocates have argued there's another route. On Friday, the White House released new data showing how many borrowers applied for Biden's plan to forgive up to $20,000 in student debt before two conservative-backed lawsuits halted the process. "Obviously, the Supreme Court will weigh in on that soon," he added.
The White House released data showing how many student-loan borrowers applied for or were deemed eligible for Biden's debt relief. This data was collected before two lawsuits blocked the implementation of the debt relief. The White House released data on Friday morning showing how many borrowers applied, or were deemed eligible, for Biden's debt relief plan before the legal challenges. The Supreme Court will be taking on two lawsuits that blocked Biden's debt relief. And the other lawsuit was filed by two student-loan borrowers who sued because they did not qualify for the full $20,000 amount of relief.
Federal Student Aid's 2022 annual report said that resuming student-loan payments this year will be a "huge undertaking." It cited the unprecedented nature of Biden's broad debt relief and extensions of the payment pause. The agency said it will improve customer service, but borrowers are continuing to struggle with their loan servicers. But it also noted changes that came from Biden's announcement in August to cancel up to $20,000 in student debt for federal borrowers making under $125,000 a year. Insider previously reported on hours-long hold times some borrowers were experiencing when trying to get help from MOHELA, a company currently involved in one of the lawsuits seeking to block Biden's broad debt relief.
Biden called out House Republicans for introducing plans that he said would worsen inflation. One GOP plan to strip funding from the IRS would add $114 billion to the deficit over ten years, the CBO found. "They campaigned on inflation," Biden said. Republicans are targeting income taxes because "that's the only way that millionaires and billionaires have to pay any taxes," Biden said. Upon winning the House majority, GOP lawmakers put forward legislation to rescind $80 billion earmarked for the IRS in an attempt to cut spending.
An independent auditor found "weakness" in how the Education Department calculated student-debt relief costs. GOP Rep. Virginia Foxx accused the department of "blatantly lying" in its estimates. The auditor did not make that accusation, and a department spokesperson said the court challenges blocking the relief have led to limited data. "The Department is blatantly lying about how much taxpayer money it is giving away," Foxx said in a statement. In September, the department estimated that its broad student-debt relief plan would cost $30 billion annually over the next decade, and that 81% of borrowers would participate in the relief.
Kevin McCarthy agreed not to cut Social Security and Medicare in debt ceiling negotiations, Sen. Joe Manchin told reporters. "Under no circumstances should Republicans vote to cut a single penny from Medicare or Social Security," Trump said in the video. Save Social Security, don't destroy it." It's still unclear what other types of cuts Republicans are considering in these negotiations. … Does that mean cuts to Social Security or Medicare or child care or Pell Grants?"
The US Army Corps of Engineers has been dredging the Mississippi River 24/7 since July. USACE maintains a nine-foot-deep channel down the Mississippi River, so that ships and barges can travel freely. A barge tows cargo down the Mississippi River, in Vicksburg, Mississippi during a historic drought. The National Weather Service predicts the likely removal of drought in much of the Mississippi River basin in February. The National Weather Service's outlook forecasts a likelihood of no drought in most of the Mississippi River basin into spring.
Some legal experts say the lawsuit's standing is questionable due to MOHELA's involvement. The latter case has had some legal experts particularly confounded due to the central role MOHELA has taken in the case. "There's no threat that Missouri may suffer harm to the Lewis and Clark fund when the Lewis and Clark fund hasn't been paid into for over a decade," Nahmias said. Even two law professors who believe Biden's plan to cancel student debt broadly is illegal aren't convinced by the states' lawsuit. "On one hand, when the state created MOHELA over 40 years ago, it made clear that MOHELA is separate," Nahmias said.
Over a thousand people flooded the section with identical comments opposing debt relief. The comment begins: "My name is [NAME] and I am writing to oppose this regulation to 'cancel' student debt." Screenshot of a public comment opposing student-debt relief on the Federal Register. Republican lawmakers have long reiterated similar points to the comments opposing relief. But as Cardona wrote on Twitter on on Monday, the administration welcomes "the Supreme Court's decision to hear the case on our student debt relief plan.
Arizona's new Democratic attorney general dismissed a lawsuit seeking to block student-debt relief. It was the third lawsuit filed that attempted to block the relief, and on Friday, Arizona's new Democratic attorney general Kris Mayes dismissed the case. Mayes took office earlier this month, and she indicated that she would be reviewing whether to continue her predecessor's legal challenge to Biden's broad debt relief. Two other lawsuits succeeded in pausing the implementation of Biden's debt relief, and those cases are now headed to the Supreme Court, which will hear the oral arguments on February 28. One of the lawsuits was filed by six Republican-led states who sued because they argued the debt relief would hurt their states' tax revenues, along with that of student-loan company MOHELA.
One will allow employers to match workers' student loan payments in the form of retirement plan contributions. It's a boon for those who owe student debt, Tamara Telesko, Director of Wealth Planning at TIAA, told Insider. "Under our reforms, many more workers would access resources for retirement and see meaningful federal retirement contributions year after year." Telesko explained that this provision would be a way for people with student debt to build savings, which many can't. Shanna Bennett, a 37-year-old borrower who had more than $130,000 in student debt last year, currently works as a human resources manager.
Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen dismissed minting a $1 trillion platinum coin to save the US from default, per the WSJ. Minting a coin would allow the government to bypass negotiations in Congress to raise the debt ceiling. The GOP is currently using the debt limit as a negotiating tool to achieve their own priorities. But Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen wasn't on board with that idea in the past — and she still isn't. She expressed the same sentiment back in 2021, when Congress was dealing with a similar partisan dilemma surrounding raising the debt ceiling.
Republicans want to cut spending on things like Social Security before raising the debt ceiling. But Warren said that the GOP is running a con game, and Trump's tax cuts should be repealed first. But Senator Elizabeth Warren thinks that it's time to take a look at rolling back tax cuts on the wealthy. "They claim their plan to use the debt ceiling to trigger global economic chaos is about fiscal responsibility. "The House Republican plan for the debt ceiling is about protecting the wealthy and the well-connected from paying their fair share in taxes — nothing more and nothing less."
Angel, a 52-year-old student-loan borrower, has $480,000 in student debt. Their debt has surged due to payments on income-driven repayment plans and ballooning interest. Biden announced reforms to those repayment plans, but it's unclear how they will be implemented. "And I know that that's a concern for a lot of people I know with student loans." "If education is really about us being better contributors to society, then why are they charging interest on the student loans?"
Donald Trump told the GOP to leave Medicare and Social Security cuts out of debt ceiling negotiations. But former President Donald Trump is warning the GOP to keep social spending programs out of it. "Under no circumstances should Republicans vote to cut a single penny from Medicare or Social Security," Trump said in the video. However, in the lead-up to Trump's 2020 run, the former president embraced abandoning a payroll tax that helps fund Social Security. Republicans and Democrats have sparred over Medicare and Social Security for years, with Republicans routinely looking to cut benefits for both programs.
The Education Department plans to revamp the student-loan servicing system. But a report from the Inspector General found it has not been preparing to do so effectively. Last week, the Education Department's Office of Inspector General released a report analyzing Federal Student Aid's (FSA) efforts to transition the current repayment system to a new one, known as Next Generation (Next Gen) Loan Servicing. Additionally, it recommends that FSA develop a policy that requires a budget request be completed and approved prior to moving forward with any changes to the student-loan servicing system. The exact timeline for when borrowers will experience the revamped student-loan servicing system is unclear at this point, especially as the administration is working to implement other significant changes.
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