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Biden's student debt handout plan overshadows bipartisan employer-aided repayment option
Biden’s student loan handout is on the backs of taxpayers: Rep. Virginia Foxx
North Carolina Republican Rep. Virginia Foxx gives her take on the state of education under President Biden on ‘Kudlow.’
The Biden administration's push to provide a handout to millions of student loan borrowers has overshadowed an employer-aided repayment option that was enacted with broad bipartisan support.
The Employer Participation in Repayment Act, which was first introduced by Sens. Mark Warner (D-Va.) and John Thune (R-S.D.) in 2016, broadens the tax exemption that allows employers to provide up to $5,250 for tuition assistance for employees to also cover payments on qualified student loans to either an employee or their lender. It was first enacted in 2020 as part of the CARES Act early in the pandemic and was extended through 2025 the following year under an omnibus appropriations bill. Though it never received a standalone vote, it had the bipartisan backing of 64 cosponsors in the Senate and 271 in the House at the time of its initial enactment.
While the law offers a bipartisan, public-private solution to the roughly $1.7 trillion in student loan debt held by 44 million Americans, it has struggled to gain traction among employers due to the lingering uncertainty over the legal fate of President Joe Biden's handout plan – which would cancel $10,000 to $20,000 in student loan debt for most borrowers with federal loans – and by the ongoing pause on repayments.
BIDEN'S NEW STUDENT LOAN REPAYMENT PLAN WOULD COST BILLIONS MORE THAN WHITE HOUSE PROJECTED