New Poll Finds Just 3 in 10 Americans Approve of Biden's Student Loan Forgiveness Plan

AP Photo/Mariam Zuhaib

Has the shine worn off Biden's student loan forgiveness plan? 

Biden's plan to eliminate student loan debt for millions of voters helped the Democrats avoid total disaster in the 2022 election. At that time, 47% of voters supported the plan while  41% opposed it.

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But according to a new AP/NORC poll, those numbers have more than flipped. Only 3 in 10 Americans now approve of Biden's handling of student debt forgiveness while 4 in 10 oppose him.

There are a few wrinkles in the poll. If the borrower was defrauded by their school, 54% say the debt should be forgiven while 18% say it shouldn't. If the borrower has made on-time payments for 20 years, the public believes by 49% vs. 23% the debt should be forgiven.

If the borrower has accrued more interest than originally borrowed 44% to 26% believe they should receive relief. "Sixty-five percent of the public favor student debt forgiveness in at least one of the circumstances asked on the survey," according to AP.

"Fewer adults say it is extremely or very important for the federal government to forgive student loan debt (39%) than medical debt (51%). Less than a third of the public approve of how student loan debt is being handled by President Biden (30%), the Democratic Party (28%), the Republican Party (21%), or the Supreme Court (15%)," according to the AP/NORC poll.

Fox News:

About 4 in 10 adults said it is extremely or very important for the federal government to provide student debt relief. A similar share said it is not too important or not important at all, with about one-quarter in the middle, saying they believe it is somewhat important. Just 15% of Republicans said it is extremely or very important to prioritize government action on student debt, compared to 58% of Democrats. 

Republicans often say taxpayers should not get burdened with repaying other people’s college debt.

The poll found younger adults are more likely to prioritize government action on student debt, with about half under 45 saying it is extremely or very important, compared to 3 in 10 older adults who said the same.

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Biden's student loan forgiveness is targeting young professionals and black men. Those two constituencies are abandoning Biden but are unsure about Trump. Some strategists believe that they can be lured back to supporting Biden by playing to their fears about debt. 

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Not a lot of borrowers are buying Biden's tactics in forgiving some debt while promising to forgive the rest.

ABC News:

Melissa Mata feels let down by the president. The Houston resident has $14,000 in student loans from a program she never finished, and she could have used the help that Biden promised.

Now she plans to sit out the November election or vote independent.

“They make these promises to get votes, but they don’t deliver. So I think for me, I wouldn’t trust it,” said Mata, 34, a bookkeeper.

Some others say Biden isn’t to blame.

Samantha Kempf, a social worker in Howell, Michigan, has $78,000 in federal student loans from her bachelor’s and master’s degrees. Kempf, a Democrat, was upset when Biden’s initial plan failed, but she doesn’t hold it against him.

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You can't keep promising to deliver something and then reneging on it. Biden can only play that game for so long. 

And this poll appears to show that the public's patience has run out.

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