Read the redacted student-debt cancellation memo that Biden has been ‘examining’ since April

President Joe Biden
The White House insists that President Joe Biden has the "highest ethical standards of anyone to ever hold this office."
  • Biden's administration has said for months it is reviewing broad student-debt cancellation.
  • But newly released documents from the Debt Collective show those reviews were finalized in April.
  • Read the 113 pages of internal Education Department emails and redacted memos here.

President Joe Biden's administration has maintained the same position for nearly seven months: it is continuing to review the president's legal authority to cancel student debt broadly.

But newly released documents show Biden has likely known whether or not he can legally cancel student debt since at least April.

Insider reported on Monday that the Debt Collective - the nation's first debtors' union - obtained documents and internal Education Department emails via a Freedom of Information Act request that showed a first draft of the memo, titled "The Secretary's Legal Authority for Broad-Based Debt Cancellation," has existed since April 5, and according to the internal emails, was circulated within White House leadership on the same day.

On April 1, White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain told Politico Biden asked the Education Department to prepare a memo on his authority to cancel at least $50,000 in student debt per borrower. While Klain said that review would take a few weeks, it's been nearly seven months, and the public has yet to see the results.

Braxton Brewington, the Debt Collective's press secretary, told Insider on Monday that the fact that the memo has existed for months but has not been released is a "political decision," and that Biden might be waiting to cancel student debt broadly before the midterm elections next year to help Democrats win.

"This is in line with how this administration has been moving politically along with student debt cancellation, which is dragging their feet in ways that do seem intentional," Brewington said.

Education Secretary Miguel Cardona continues to say conversations surrounding student-loan forgiveness are ongoing.

"It's a priority for me and for President Biden to make sure that part of the conversation is examining loan forgiveness," Cardona said at The Atlantic's Education Summit on Tuesday. "And those conversations are continuing."

Here are the documents the Debt Collective received surrounding Biden's legal authority for broad student-debt cancellation.

Read the original article on Business Insider

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