Compared to the payouts to for-profit colleges, the CARES Act was far less generous with student debt holders, allowing only deferment of interest and payments on Federal student loans through September 2020. This just kicks the can down the road, rather than providing real debt relief. The House Democrats’ proposed HEROES Act would go a bit further to forgive $10,000 of federal loans to economically distressed borrowers.
A more sensible and just approach, especially in the middle of an economic crisis, would be to cancel all student debt. This would help people survive with a roof over their heads during the economic crisis and lessen the crushing financial stress that student loans cause.
Sen. Bernie Sanders and Rep. Ilhan Omar introduced a bill to cancel all student debt last year, and Rep. Omar recently stressed its importance during this pandemic: “Student debt was a crisis before the coronavirus. And it’s an even deeper crisis now… We must not force Americans to choose between putting food on the table and paying off exorbitant student loans.”
Cancellation of student debt would also boost the broader economy by creating a huge financial stimulus. It would free up money for people to spend on housing and goods to help get the economy going again.
Jesus: Hey, Dad? God: Yes, Son? Jesus: Western civilization followed me home. Can I keep it? God: Certainly not! And put it down this minute--you don't know where it's been! Tom Robbins in Another Roadside Attraction