How Student Debt Relief Could Secure Biden's Support in Key Swing States

How Student Debt Relief Could Secure Biden’s Support in Key Swing States

Ahead of the November election, President Biden is devoting a significant amount of political capital to student loan relief, and analysts believe this might have a significant impact in certain areas.

“The swing states are going to be kind of where we look to see the biggest targeted return, states like Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Michigan,” Michael Hopkins, CEO of Northern Starr Strategies stated.

Since Biden assumed office, the few remaining purple states have benefited from billions of dollars in student debt forgiveness, and every vote matters since polls indicate that the race between him and former President Trump is close.

“Loan borrowers in the country, distressed student loan borrowers, I think they are the largest, really politically untethered voting bloc in modern American history,” Alan Collinge, founder of StudentLoanJustice.org stated. “This is a huge group of people who vote in a much higher percentage than average.”

Over 44 million student loan borrowers in the US owe more than $1.6 trillion in total. In his first year as president, Biden has pardoned $153 billion.

The states that have benefited the most from income-driven repayment (IDR) schemes for student debt reduction were highlighted in a chart produced by the Biden administration on Monday. Texas, Florida, and California are the states with the most electoral power; Wyoming, North Dakota, and Alaska are at the bottom of the list.

However, swing states have also benefited greatly.

According to an analysis presented on Monday by John Della Volpe, the director of polling at the Harvard Institute of Politics, seventy percent of voters think that government action on student debt is necessary.

How Student Debt Relief Could Secure Biden's Support in Key Swing States

Among younger voters, who Biden has found it challenging to mobilize against Trump in the polls, forgiveness enjoys solid support.

This week, Biden made two significant announcements about student loan relief. He unveiled plans on Monday that would forgive all or part of the debt for those with growing unpaid interest, borrowers on different IDR plans, those who have been making student loan payments for more than 20 years, those going through difficult times, and those who attended low-cost educational programs.

Read Also: 7 States File Lawsuits Against Biden’s Student Debt Relief Proposal

Additionally, Biden declared on Friday that he would be providing $7.4 billion in relief to 277,000 borrowers across more than 40 states.

The actions are in response to voters’ perception that Biden’s record on the economy is lacking overall. Just 25% of respondents to a Marquette Law School survey from February said they thought the economy was doing “excellent” or “good.”

“The campaign really needs to be surrounding and drowning those who have been impacted by student loan debt, and having them tell the story of what Joe Biden’s policies have done for them, and how that has opened up other doors for them to not only build and create wealth, but have a little more breathing room when it comes to their everyday life,” Antjuan Seawright, a Democratic strategist stated.

Republicans will probably contest the suggested proposal, claiming the Biden administration is attempting to purchase votes.

“The administration is tone deaf. There’s no other way to put it,” The chair of the House Education Committee, Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-N.C.), stated after Biden’s announcement on Friday that $7 billion in loan forgiveness will be provided.

“We know that instead of doing its job the administration focused time, energy, and resources on its illegal student loan scheme. And that has been frustrating, especially since it has jeopardized the academic journey of millions of students,” Foxx added, alluding to the issues surrounding the introduction of new federal financial aid applications for college applicants.

Supporters of Biden claim that conservatives are oblivious to the situation.

“I think a lot of a lot of Republicans like to say that this is a giveaway. That this is how Biden’s trying to win votes on this. You bet,” Ramirez stated. “That’s what a democracy is about. You make campaign promises and you deliver on them, and people vote for you because you change their lives. If they don’t like it, they don’t like democracy.”

Proponents claim that stalwart GOP resistance to aiding student loan borrowers has already cost them at the polls and may do so once more.