Student Loan Payments To Continue Under Debt Ceiling Deal

On Tuesday, Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley (MA-07) filed an amendment to H.R. 3746, legislation “to raise the debt ceiling, to protect student loan borrowers and preserve the Biden Administration’s pause on federal student loan payments,” according to a statement shared with ESSENCE.

House Republicans and Democrats have been engaged in talks for weeks, with Democrats urging that the federal government be allowed to increase its levels of spending to pay for vital government programs. Republicans generally oppose spending increases because of claims that it wants to lower the government’s debt.

A deal was reached on Saturday, but, as currently written, it “would codify an end to the current pause on student loan payments, interest charges, and debt collection that has been in effect for more than three years, and would commit to an aggressive timeline to restart student loan payments, regardless of the outcome of a pair of cases before the Supreme Court on whether President Biden’s student debt cancellation plan can go into effect,” the statement from Pressley’s office reads.

As the debtor advocacy organization, The Debt Collective, pointed out in a series of tweets, “codifying the end to the pause doesn’t just mean ‘the date to resume payment is September 1st.’ It means ‘the date to resume payment is September 1st and there is never a chance of extending this date further again, ever. It will be impossible.’”

“The student loan payment pause has been an essential lifeline for workers and families struggling to make ends meet,” Pressley urges. “My amendment would protect student borrowers while also affirming the President’s clear legal authority to implement payment pauses, broad-based debt cancellation, and other critical relief measures. Republicans continue to play games with our economy, with disregard for our most vulnerable families.”

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