More than a dozen organizations, from the NAACP to the National Black Justice Coalition, are rallying in front of the White House today to demand President Biden cancel all student debt.
Sponsored by the Hip Hop Caucus, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that connects the hip-hop community to the civic process, the Cut it: Cancel Student Debt Rally seeks debt relief for 46 million Americans and calls on Biden to extend the suspension of student loan payments until the end of the pandemic. At the very least, the Hip Hop Caucus statement said, the president should uphold a promise he made during his campaign to back Senator Elizabeth Warren’s plan to immediately cancel a minimum of $10,000 of student debt per person.
“Nearly a year into his first [term] as president … President Biden has yet to make good on this campaign promise,” the Hip Hop Caucus website reads. “This particular promise has a deep impact on many in the BIPOC community, making the student debt crisis a civil rights and racial justice issue.”
The Biden administration has already canceled more than $1.5 billion in debt for students who were defrauded by their institutions. In December, the Department of Education announced a 90-day extension of the pause on student loan repayment, interest and collections until May 1, 2022. Biden also directed the Departments of Education and Justice last year to examine his legal authority to cancel up to $50,000 in debt by executive action, but the results of the memo haven’t yet been released publicly. Legal experts who have weighed in disagree on the limits of the president’s power to clear student debt.