Dori: Scott Walker blasts Biden’s college loan forgiveness plan as a `scam’ that will hurt blue-collar workers

Aug 24, 2022, 2:52 PM | Updated: 6:20 pm
(Photo by Paul Morigi/Getty Images for We, The 45 Million)
(Photo by Paul Morigi/Getty Images for We, The 45 Million)

While many college students and graduates around the country are celebrating President Joe Biden’s Wednesday announcement that he will cancel up to $20,000 in their federal student loan debt, outspoken former Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker called the move “a scam.”

“This is total pandering before the mid-terms to try and get out the youth vote,” Walker told Dori Monson Show listeners. Walker, who is now the president of the conservative group Young America’s Foundation, blasted the move as a “scam” that could “actually drive up inflation.”

The debt forgiveness proposal is less than what other Democrats were seeking but could affect tens of millions of Americans who have not yet paid off their student loans. Biden’s plan would cancel up to $10,000 in student loan debt for those earning less than $125,000 a year. Another $10,000 in relief would be available for low-income students who received Pell grants. It does not apply to private loans.

In Washington state, this could affect more than 760,000 people, according to a state Attorney General’s office 2017 report.

Because of likely legal challenges, there is no timeline for when potential student debt relief could actually occur.

“This is raw political pandering,” criticized Walker. He pointed to a 2016 report by President Barack Obama’s administration, citing that “over an entire career, someone who gets a college degree makes as much as $1 million more than someone who didn’t go to college.”

The result of Biden’s plan, Walker explained, is that “those who don’t have a college degree are being asked to pay for the folks” who do.

“Everybody else gets screwed, to put it bluntly. People who paid their own way by taking odd jobs, people who had student loans and paid them off; or the third group – like my brother and sister-in-law — who should be the most ticked off,” Walker said. “They didn’t go to school. They have a car loan. They have a mortgage. And they are being asked to pay taxes for someone who racked up four, five, six years of college. Now they get to pay this off and add $300 million to the national debt.

“It’s a total scam,” Walker continued. “For all the talk about fairness, how is it fair that other people who didn’t take on this debt are now being asked to pay for it?”

Walker, a Republican who was Wisconsin governor from 2011-2019, is no stranger to facing education-related battles. He survived a 2012 recall election following a contentious public-union collective-bargaining rights battle in his state, creating a furor among teachers’ union leaders. In November 2018, the leader of the state teacher’s union defeated Walker in their gubernatorial race.

With the possibility of local teachers in Kent School District threatening to strike and refusing to return to the classroom when school reopens this fall, what message does Walker have for parents, Dori asked.

“There are plenty of good teachers,” Walker responded. “It’s the union bosses who are the ones driving this. . . They don’t care in Washington, they don’t care in Wisconsin, they don’t care across America.”

“This is what’s happening when you have a governor and politicians who are completely in bed with union bosses. It’s outrageous.”

Listen to Dori Monson weekday afternoons from noon – 3 p.m. on KIRO Newsradio, 97.3 FM. Subscribe to the podcast here.

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Dori: Scott Walker blasts Biden’s college loan forgiveness plan as a `scam’ that will hurt blue-collar workers