Democratic Presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren is proposing the elimination of existing student loan debt for millions of Americans, part of a sweeping set of education funding proposals she announced.
The Massachusetts senator says she would eliminate almost all student loan debt for 42 million Americans, canceling $50,000 in debt for each person with household income under $100,000. According to Warren's description of the plan in a piece to be posted on Medium, the debt cancellation proposal would create a one-time cost to the federal government of $640 billion.
She is the latest in the Democratic field have proposed reforming the nation's student loan programs, including dramatic restructuring of existing refinancing structures. Warren, though, appears to be the first to propose flat-out debt cancellation.
Others, like Senators Cory Booker, Kirsten Gillibrand and Kamala Harris, are backing the Debt-Free College Act, a bill that would cover all costs for students attending a public college without necessitating loans.
Among the other things Warren is proposing is elimination of tuition and fees for two- and four-year public college degree programs, as well as a $100 billion investment in Pell Grants, a federal aid program that requires no payback.
Tuition-free higher education was one of the key ideas Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders ran on during his 2016 presidential run.