The Daily Chart: Behind the Student Debt Shuffle

President Biden is determined to pander to youth voters who don’t like him by forgiving student debt despite his previous plan being struck down by the Supreme Court. His new plan likely has the same legal defects. In any case, it represents a massive wealth transfer from non-college working class taxpayers to generally more affluent upper middle class individuals and/or their families.

But dig a little deeper and the wealth transfer is even more insidious. Two features of the Biden proposal stand out. One part forgives debt for those who attended a low‐​financial value program (e.g., programs or colleges that fail the Cohort Default Rate or Gainful Employment). A second feature will forgive debt for those undergoing economic hardship.

And who might qualify for these two stipulations? This chart gives a hint:

Notice the education and fine arts degrees offer almost no return on investment (actually negative for fine arts). And where do you tend to find the most liberal students? Exactly. In other words, engineers, computer scientists, and other fields where you find more Republicans will be paying off the worthless degrees of education and fine arts majors. Think of the whole thing as am indirect subsidy for the Democratic Party.

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