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Brand-New Poll Reveals NYers' Reaction To Student Loan Forgiveness Plan

A new poll is shedding light on New Yorkers' opinions of President Biden's student loan forgiveness plan.
A new poll is shedding light on New Yorkers' opinions of President Biden's student loan forgiveness plan. Photo Credit: QuinceCreative on Pixabay

When it comes to President Biden’s sweeping plan to forgive thousands of dollars in federal student loans, a majority of New Yorkers support the move, according to a fresh Siena College poll

The poll found that by 56 to 33 percent, New Yorkers supported the plan, which would forgive up to $20,000 in debt for those who received Pell Grants with loans held by the Department of Education.

Non-Pell Grant recipients would have $10,000 in student debt canceled.

Among those polled, 29 percent think Biden’s plan goes too far, while 21 percent said it doesn’t go far enough. Thirty-nine percent said the plan is the right approach, according to the poll.

Pollsters also found that 38 percent of New Yorkers reported having taken out a federal student loan to pay for college, with just over half (54 percent) saying they have paid their loan back in full.

Those who still have a balance due on their student loan made up 45 percent of borrowers, or 17 percent of all New Yorkers, the poll found.

As to why, exactly, they support the president’s loan forgiveness plan, 57 percent of New Yorkers said the move will allow many Americans to escape the burden of student debt and will help the economy.

Over one-third (35 percent) disagreed with that notion, saying that canceling student debt will increase inflation. 

Opponents also argued that the move is unfair to those who already paid off their loans, or never took out loans to begin with.

“Majorities of New Yorkers support the president’s plan to cancel up to $20,000 worth of student loans for some, up to $10,000 for others, and to cap the amount any borrower must pay each month at 5 percent of their earnings,” said Siena College Research Institute Director, Don Levy.

“Support is greatest among Democrats, Blacks, those with a balance on their student loans and New Yorkers under 50 years of age. Nearly two-thirds of Republicans and a plurality of independents oppose the plan.”

Levy added that at least 60 percent of those under 50 support the plan, claiming it will give them a better chance to achieve the American Dream and benefit the economy.

The Siena College poll was conducted between Sunday, Aug. 28 and Thursday, Sept. 1, by random phone calls to 403 New York adults, using both landline and cellphone numbers.

Another 400 adults were polled from a “proprietary online panel of New Yorkers.”

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