Republicans Criticize Extending Student Loan Freeze Rep. Jim Clyburn, D-S.C., and President Joe Biden at South Carolina State University's graduation ceremony in Orangeburg, South Carolina. (Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images)
By Luca Cacciatore | Wednesday, 06 April 2022 07:06 PM
Republicans are taking aim at the Biden administration's decision on Wednesday to extend the moratorium on student loan repayments until late summer, The Hill reported.
GOP officials in both chambers of Congress are characterizing the policy as an elitist handout and accusing Democrats of being selective in their roll-back of COVID-era measures.
"How was it fair to somebody like myself who just paid his off?" questioned Florida Rep. Byron Donalds, a Republican.
"I grew up poor. I've never been rich, but I had an ability to pay, make my payments consistently over time, and then pay it off," he continued, acknowledging that as a member of Congress and with a background in finance, circumstances have made it easier for him than others.
"I don't want to be glib, but young people have to take stock of what they're majoring in," he said. "You know, why would I go to a private university to major in art history? Odds are you're not getting a job, definitely in your degree field, in order to pay back the money that you're taking on."
Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., characterized the extension of the moratorium as "an insult to every American who responsibly paid debts" in a Tuesday post on Twitter.
"There's no free lunch: this reckless move puts taxpayers on the hook for billions," Cotton added.
Rep. Virginia Foxx, R-N.C., ranking member of the Education and Labor Committee, told The Hill that taxpayers are "footing the student loan bill for graduate students and Ivy League lawyers."
"Ruling via executive fiat is the epitome of cowardice and happens when an administration's policies are so radical, they can be carried out only in secret," Foxx said in a statement.
The freeze in student loan payments is now set to expire on Aug. 31, after having an original date of May 1. It is the sixth extension of the pause since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.