by tom moodyComments Off on Joe Biden Backed Bills Making It Harder for Americans to Reduce their Student Debt
Friendly, funny ol' Uncle Joe (who wants to be President) isn't much of a friend to American millennials. David Sirota has a detailed account of Biden's efforts over the years to make student debt survive bankruptcy, by (among other things) pushing the myth of epidemic strategic defaults by college graduates.
Biden helped the banking industry promote the negative portrayal of debtors. During [a] 2000 [Senate] debate, he said the goal of the bankruptcy bill he was backing was “to assure that those who have the ability to pay do not walk away from their legal debts.”
Various bills attempting to protect banks from these nefarious cheats (in reality about 1% of loan defaulters) floated through Congress over the years. Finally, with Biden's pushing, student loans were excepted from bankrupty protection. Writes Sirota,
In 2005, though, lawmakers and financial industry lobbyists resurrected a new version of the legislation -- one that included provisions to make it more difficult for students to get bankruptcy protections not just for their government loans but also for the loans they received from private financial firms. This time around there was no [Paul] Wellstone, a liberal icon who had died in a 2002 plane crash, to lead the Democratic opposition to the initiative. With Biden’s support, the bankruptcy legislation sailed through the Senate in the first few months of the new congressional session. In April, it was signed into law by President George W. Bush, whose top campaign contributor had become MBNA [credit card company and Biden backer].