Republicans in the Senate have drafted legislation to stop President Biden from forgiving student loan debts ahead of the midterms. Mike Papantonio & Farron Cousins discuss more.


*This transcript was generated by a third-party transcription software company, so please excuse any typos.

Mike Papantonio:             Yeah. It’s happening right as we speak.

Republicans in the Senate have drafted legislation to stop president Biden from forgiving student loan debts ahead of the midterms. I love your position on this, Farron. Your position is if we’re gonna save the midterms for the Democrats, this is what they must do.

Farron Cousins:                  Yep.

Mike Papantonio:             This at least this gives them a fighting chance in the midterms. Why wouldn’t we do that? We spend $800 billion, $800 billion on the Pentagon.

Farron Cousins:                  A year.

Mike Papantonio:             A year. And we can’t, we can’t say to these students, bless your heart, God bless you. You went, you got a college education. You tried to better yourself. You did all these things that we asked you to do as a democracy and now we want you to be in debt for the rest of your life.

Farron Cousins:                  Right. And, and you know, the interest rates on these loans have gone through the roof. The cost of college has risen exponentially in the last 20 years.

Mike Papantonio:             Mm-hmm.

Farron Cousins:                  And we beat it into these kids’ brains in high school, you will be nothing in your life.

Mike Papantonio:             Right.

Farron Cousins:                  If you don’t go to college. We shame them into going to college and then tell them, oh, well just take out a $40,000 a year loan. You could pay it back. You’ll get a great job coming outta college to pay these off. Well, no, those great jobs may have existed in the, you know, seventies and eighties, early eighties. They don’t exist anymore.

Mike Papantonio:             Yeah. I, I came out of law school almost $250,000 in debt. I know you had a huge debt that you had to pay off too. And you’re having to pay that debt off when you’re trying to start your life.

Farron Cousins:                  Right.

Mike Papantonio:             You’re getting married. You’re having children. You’re trying to become part of the workforce in America. You’re trying to better yourself. And now, and then every month you’re getting this bill, you know, and the worst part about it is let me call another ball and strike. You know what, you know, the Democrats took the right of that student to declare bankruptcy.

Farron Cousins:                  Yeah.

Mike Papantonio:             In other words, every, everything could be falling down, the Democrat bill, this is a Democratic bill that said that student may not declare bankruptcy. And of course the Republicans, oh my God. They jumped all over it. Yeah. Yeah. We’re with you on that. We’re gonna make this person pay until it hurts. And this is government money. We, it’s we’re, we’re, we’re, we’re being shortsighted if we don’t do this. But you got Republicans trying to stop it right now.

Farron Cousins:                  Right. They’ve got this legislation that would, you know, remove this ability, you know, basically declare he can’t do it, but of course they don’t even have the numbers to get it passed. But they, by passing the legislation, what they’re doing is acknowledging that he can do this.

Mike Papantonio:             Mm-hmm.

Farron Cousins:                  And some of them are saying, well, this is just bribery. Okay, fine. Look, I honestly don’t care what you wanna call.

Mike Papantonio:             I don’t care how this qualifies either.

Farron Cousins:                  Right. I mean, we got one point, was it 1.9 trillion in student loan debt.

Mike Papantonio:             Yes.

Farron Cousins:                  Like you said, this was the government’s money for the most part.

Mike Papantonio:             They can, they can, do it over time. There’s all kinds of ways to get this. And you know, the argument is, well, we can’t afford one point trillion dollars. Really? Really? You know, we, we’re handing money out like a drunk sailor all over the world and we can’t take care of these students that have done what we’ve asked them to do, go to college, get better. They’ve done that.

Farron Cousins:                  Well. And, and, and the other argument too, is, well, this will take the economy. Really? Because we haven’t been paying for two years now and nothing bad has happened with that.

Mike Papantonio:             Exactly. Yeah. Trump gave a stand down just to, he gave a stand down on the debt, right?

Farron Cousins:                  Yeah. He, he froze the payments, you know, and they’re still frozen now.

Mike Papantonio is an American attorney and television and radio talk show host. He is past president of The National Trial Lawyers, the most prestigious trial lawyer association in America; and is one of the few living attorneys inducted into the Trial Lawyer Hall of Fame. He hosts the international television show "America's Lawyer"; and co-hosts Ring of Fire Radio, a nationally syndicated weekly radio program, with Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and Sam Seder.