Intelligence Squared debate: Should America forgive student debt?

Illustration for student debt
Is it time for a student loan bailout? Or are federal dollars better spent elsewhere? That's the motion of this Intelligence Squared debate.
​Getty Images file

Facing growing discontent over the rising student loan repayments in the middle of a Pandemic, many prominent Democrats — and some Republicans — are calling on Washington to cancel much of the $1.7 trillion that Americans owe.

They say it would help level the playing field, stimulate the economy, unbridle graduates to pursue what they want, and offer a lifeline amidst the largest health crisis the world has seen in decades.

But others argue that it would balloon the federal deficit, waste taxpayer money and benefit wealthy borrowers who don’t need their student loans canceled.

The motion: Forgive student debt

For the motion:

  • Ashley Harrington, federal advocacy director and senior counsel, Center for Responsible Lending.

  • Dalié Jiménez, student loan law initiative director and professor, University of California, Irvine School of Law.

Against the motion:

  • Beth Akers, resident scholar, American Enterprise Institute.

  • Nick Gillespie, editor-at-large, Reason.

Use the audio player above to listen to the program.

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