Aug. 31 is the deadline for the last extension granted to borrowers since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, and White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said the president would make a decision by the end of the month.
The delay in the announcement and the proximity to the midterm elections raises the question of whether the news will include an extension of the payment pause or a certain amount of that debt being forgiven.
In an economy where millions of people are struggling with inflation and rising prices, it’s frustrating that President Biden hasn’t yet provided a clear answer, said Carlos Moreno of the American Civil Liberties Union, quoted by The Hill.
The freeze has been extended six times since March 2020 during the tenure of former President Donald Trump (2017-2021).
The incumbent president feels pressured by hundreds of lawmakers from his own Democratic Party, who recently wrote a letter urging him to suspend or postpone payments again.
During his campaign, Biden advocated forgiving at least $10,000 per person on federal student loans, but so far that promise has remained unfulfilled.
However, in his 18 months in power, he approved more than $32 billion to reduce the fees of hundreds of thousands of borrowers, CNN reported.
The Department of Education announced last Tuesday that it would allocate $3,900 million to pay off the loans of 208,000 students at the now-defunct ITT Technical Institute, which is privately administered.
Observers agree that extending the payments would help sway public opinion a little in favor of the White House resident and his party amid mounting inflation affecting the country.
Some Democrats argue that resuming payments for the party that identifies with the color blue could come at a political cost as it tries to defend its narrow majorities in the House and Senate.