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“If we could bail out Wall Street, we sure as hell can reduce student debt in this country,” Sanders said.
The United States Senator Bernie Sanders wants to erase all student debt i.e., US$1.6 trillion worth of debt by proposing higher taxes on Wall Street. The presidential hopeful was due to unveil his proposal Monday along with progressive Congresswoman Ilhan Omar.
Along with the cancellation of debts, the senator also wants to make two and four-year public and tribal colleges and universities free of debt and tuition. The current student loan will be paid for by a tax on Wall Street.
"We are going to forgive student debt in this country," Sanders said. "We have for the first time in the modern history of this country a younger generation that if we don't change it, and we intend to change it, will have a lower standard of living than their parents, more in debt, lower wages than their parents, unable to buy the house that they desire."
Around 45 million U.S. citizens currently have student loans and Sanders’ plan is to cancel all their loans regardless of their income. The proposal goes beyond Elizabeth Warren’s proposal of canceling student debt of families earning less than US$250,000 per year. According to Warren, her proposal aims to reduce the racial wealth gap.
Sanders will be joined by Congresswoman Ilhan Omar and Pramila Jayapal while unveiling his proposals of taxing Wall Street to raise the debt fonds.
According to the plan, a 0.5 percent tax on stock trades (or 50 cents for every US$100 worth of stock), a 0.1 percent fee on bonds, and a 0.005 percent fee on deliveries would be levied which according to the senator could raise more than US$2.4 trillion over the next 10 years. He plans to use the extra money for his other college funding plans.
"Congress voted to bail out the crooks on Wall Street, do you remember that?" he said at an event Sunday in South Caroline.
"They provided seven hundred billion in federal loans and in addition trillions of dollars in zero or very low-interest loans. So I think the time is now for Wall Street to repay that obligation to the American people. If we could bail out Wall Street, we sure as hell can reduce student debt in this country."
The Sanders proposal comes two days before the first debates involving candidates seeking the Democratic nomination for the right to challenge Republican President Donald Trump in November 2020. Ten candidates each will meet in back-to-back debates on Wednesday and Thursday nights in Miami, Florida.