Joe Biden is not a fan of polls. His approval ratings have been in freefall for months, and even before a freefall in the spring and summer, the president’s attitude was dismissive at best.
In January, McClatchy’s White House correspondent Francesca Chambers asked how he planned to win back moderates and independents who voted for him in 2020 but, according to polls, were unhappy with his job performance.
Biden’s response: “I don’t believe in polls.”
He can change his tone because his rating is up slightly; he may even see that thumbs-up as a signal to go full steam ahead on his agenda.
But there are two polls Biden needs to see — and believe — before making a decision on student loan debt.
Education Secretary Miguel Cardona on NBC’s “Meet the Press” program said Sunday that the Biden administration would announce a decision on whether to extend a pause on federal student loan debt the next day. next week, pulling a squeal with the August 31 deadline when the moratorium on loan payments expire.
Progressive lawmakers are pushing for Biden to forgive up to $50,000 per borrower, though he would favor a $10,000 forgiveness per borrower. Either way, it would increase the federal deficit exponentially.
As Forbes reported, canceling up to $10,000 in federal student loans per borrower would cost the government about $245 billion, according to the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget. Imagine what a forgiveness of $50,000 would do per borrower.
Former Treasury Secretary Larry Summers struck “unreasonably generous student loan relief” on Monday that he said could worsen inflation, according to The Hill.
“I hope the administration does not contribute to inflation on a macro level by providing unreasonably generous student loan relief or on a micro level by encouraging higher tuition fees,” he said. Summers, who served in the Clinton administration, in a series of tweets.
“Every dollar spent on student loan relief is a dollar that could have been used to support those who don’t have the opportunity to go to college,” he continued. “Student loan debt relief is an expense that increases demand and increases inflation.”
This worries a majority of Americans. A new CNBC poll has found that 59% of Americans say they are worried that canceling student loan debt could make inflation worse.
It’s a poll that should get the president’s attention.
The same goes for the one Gallup released on Monday – it found that 5.6% of Americans rate their life badly enough to be categorized as suffering.
Gallup measures Americans’ Quality of Life Index as “thriving,” “struggling” or “suffering” based on respondents rating their current life and expected future life on a scale of zero to 10, according to The Hill. .
The percentage of Americans classified as prosperous fell to 51.2% in July from 59% in November.
Conclusion, Mr. President: Inflation and a struggling economy are making life difficult for many Americans outside the ring road.
Biden signed the Inflation Cut Act on August 16, but a Penn Wharton Budget Mode study indicates there is little confidence the legislation will have an impact on inflation, such as the reported Forbes.
As he considers canceling student loans, Biden should consider the daily struggles of Americans and not make inflation worse.