Veterans group calls plan an insult to veterans, jeopardizes prosperity they fought to preserve
ARLINGTON, Va.— The Biden Administration on Wednesday announced a plan to ‘forgive’ billions of dollars in student loan debts. Leaning on a decades-old law meant to ease the financial burdens for service members deployed to fight overseas, President Biden’s plan sets a poor precedent for future borrowers while doing nothing to curb the rising costs of education and adding to the nation’s unsustainable debt.
CVA Executive Director Russ Duerstine had this to say about the president’s misguided plan:
“The president’s ‘forgiveness’ plan merely transfers the financial burden to taxpayers while feasibly adding to the nearly $31 trillion in national debt, jeopardizing the prosperity of the country for which veterans fought and sacrificed. This is simply bad policy that will do more harm than good. Adding insult to injury, it abuses the intent of the HEROES Act—a law intended to ease the burdens reservists and national guardsmen face when deploying in defense of the country—to excuse these debts. It is a disservice to all Americans for this administration to stretch decades-old legislation beyond their intents to score political points without addressing the problems of the underlying issue.”
Millions of veterans earned their educational benefits through service, sweat and sacrifice. The HEROES Act of 2003 was an originally temporary emergency measure to help reserve component and National Guard service members holding student debt cope with sudden mobilization at the start of a major war.
Similar to the misuse of Authorizations for the Use of Military Force (AUMF) to justify the deployment of American troops many times over to countries not connected to the intended purpose for decades after their application had expired, leveraging the HEROES Act and unrelated national emergencies is another example of the executive branch stretching laws well beyond their original intent and highlights the need for Congress to reassert its constitutional role in checking and reining in these unilateral abuses that carry such weighty consequences—intended and unintended—for the country.