From Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC) to Ilhan Omar, members of the progressive “Squad” are some of the most prominent voices calling for student debt cancellation in Congress. Yet new reporting shows that they have a clear conflict of interest. They would see tens of thousands of their own debt absorbed by taxpayers if their policy push goes through.
What We Just Learned About AOC’s Student Debt Conflict of Interest
The New York Post’s Conor Skelding reviewed the financial disclosure forms of these various members of Congress. He found that they collectively owe somewhere between $180,004 and $400,000 in student loans.
Ocasio-Cortez had somewhere between $15,000 and $50,000 in unpaid student loans as of 2020, the Post reports. So, too, Rep. Jamaal Bowman of New York had more than $100,000 in outstanding student loans as of 2020. Omar, for her part, had at least $15,000 in loans.
These woke pols want student loans forgiven — including their own https://t.co/RJuBQpYFPx pic.twitter.com/pFxegsFCZt
— New York Post (@nypost) January 29, 2022
Yes, that’s right: The loudest and proudest advocates of a taxpayer bailout for college graduates in Congress would themselves see tens of thousands of dollars in financial benefits from this move.
What’s AOC’s Real Motivation?
To be clear, I’m not suggesting that the Squad’s sole motivation is their personal finances. They may very well still earnestly believe in the cause. (And it’s just a nice perk that it will massively benefit their bank accounts.)
But this is clearly a conflict of interest. And, more importantly, it’s another reminder that despite all the rhetoric about student debt cancellation supposedly helping struggling young people, it’s mostly wealthy elites who benefit.
Student Debt ‘Cancellation’ Helps the Elite
After all, even many left-leaning think tanks have found that forcing taxpayers to absorb the loss for $1.7+ trillion in student debt, as the Squad has long advocated, would be a highly regressive policy. This means it disproportionately benefits the affluent and well-off.
Well, just think about it like this. The only people who benefit from student loans being “canceled” are people who went to college. And that group of people tends to be much wealthier than those who didn’t attend college. (That’s why people go!)
Yet all taxpaying Americans eat the loss and bear the financial burden of “canceling” student loans. So, it essentially forcibly distributes wealth from the working class to the affluent.
You don’t have to take my word for it. A University of Chicago study found that the top 20 of income earners would see five times more benefit from canceling student debt than the bottom 20 percent.
AOC and her pals are just a glaring example of this empirically-confirmed phenomenon.
Advocates of student debt cancellation may talk a big game about helping the poor, but the policy they’re pushing is really a taxpayer bailout for the American elite.
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