Student Loan Forgiveness Recipients Likely to Spend On Nonessentials Like Vacations

Student Loan Forgiveness Recipients Likely to Spend On Nonessentials Like Vacations

By Corinne Murdock |

Recipients of President Joe Biden’s student loan forgiveness program appear to be wrestling with shoulder angels and devils over how they should spend their relief funds.

According to a recent survey of 1,250 applicants by Intelligent, 75 percent expressed interest in spending on essential items like groceries while 73 percent expressed interest in spending on nonessential items like vacations. 60 percent of these applicants said that student loans had an adverse impact on their life.

66 percent were likely to pay off their rent or mortgage, 65 percent were likely to pay off credit card debt, 62 percent were likely to fund transportation costs, 60 percent were likely to pay off medical care or other debts, and 40 percent were likely to pay for childcare.

Comparatively, 52 percent were likely to buy new clothing and accessories, 46 percent were likely to go on a vacation, 46 percent were likely to eat out, 44 percent were likely to buy a smartphone, 43 percent were likely to invest in the stock market, 42 percent were likely to buy gifts, 36 percent were likely to buy a gaming system, 30 percent were likely to finance their wedding, 28 percent were likely to buy drugs or alcohol, and 27 percent were likely to go gambling. 

Despite 73 percent of respondents saying that they would spend their forgiveness funds on nonessentials, 73 percent also said that doing so would be wrong. 84 percent of male respondents were likely to spend on nonessentials, versus 65 percent of female respondents; 80 percent of male respondents said that doing so would be wrong, versus 67 percent of females. 

Twice as many Democratic applicants as Republicans insisted that these types of expenditures were acceptable. 

The Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals blocked Biden’s student loan forgiveness program earlier this month (Missouri v. Biden). Despite the hold, the Biden administration told reporters that it continues to accept and review applications. 

Biden predicted last Thursday that the order would soon lift, saying that his administration would be mailing checks sometime this week or the next. The funds wouldn’t be mailed in check form, but would be applied directly to their loan balances. 

The president criticized Republicans for fighting the controversial program. 

Nearly 22 million of 40 million eligible borrowers have applied for student loan forgiveness. Over 1.3 million Arizonans at least are eligible for relief. Applications don’t close until the end of next year. 

On Monday, the Biden administration announced reforms to other student loan forgiveness programs, such as relief for those victimized by colleges with false advertising or other forms of fraud. The administration also reformed rules for student loan forgiveness for government and nonprofit workers. 

Corinne Murdock is a reporter for AZ Free News. Follow her latest on Twitter, or email tips to

America Is Facing a Cycle of Doom but Nobody Seems to Care

America Is Facing a Cycle of Doom but Nobody Seems to Care

By Dr. Thomas Patterson |

America’s political class can no longer put off the inevitable. They soon will have to pay for their insanely reckless fiscal practices.

It’s not going to be pretty. America’s debt has reached an appalling $31 trillion. Annual interest payments will exceed $1 trillion this year. Debt service is well on its way to crowding out other priorities, a trend which will only accelerate.

Unfortunately, a steep rise in interest rates occurred near the end of the biggest spending binge ever. Economists are warning we are nearing the dreaded “doom loop” in which interest costs can be covered only by more borrowing which further drives up interest expense, creating a vicious cycle.

There is a weird, almost preternatural calm about our dire fiscal future during this campaign season. We’ve seen much consternation about inflation, public safety, the border, and other critical issues. Yet politicians and the media hardly mentioned the debt crisis, so the public seems to assume everything is under control.

It isn’t, not by a long shot. Uncle Sam issued $7 trillion in new debt to finance the recovery from the COVID pandemic and our panicked overreaction to the disease. It’s too bad we can’t take back that $7 trillion.

Much of it was stolen by fraud and bureaucratic bumbling. Funds went to school districts, that haven’t spent them so far, to finance the indolence of those who preferred not to work and to Democrat pet projects like “climate change.” Millions of voters in no distress whatsoever got checks, as did some illegal immigrants.

Many economists predicted that injecting that much cash into the economy would cause inflation, especially since supply was limited by weakness in the labor market, fuel shortages, and supply chain problems. They were mostly ignored but turned out to be absolutely correct. After decades of relative price stability, we are now experiencing 8% inflation with no end in sight.

Millions of non-economists are experiencing what that does to your standard of living. Suddenly, food, fuel, and shelter have become existential concerns to millions of Americans, and the economic future looks dim.

Inflation also increases government spending. Social Security benefits are inflation-adjusted, resulting in an 8%, $100 billion increase. Total government healthcare costs will grow from $710 billion last year to $915 billion.

Financial markets cannot ignore the cloud of government debt hanging over our economy. A serious recession will almost certainly soon be upon us. Already, declining stock and bond values over the past nine months assure a steep decline in capital gains tax revenue, another contributing factor to the deficit.

The Federal Reserve board is doing the only thing it can to address inflation, which is to raise core interest rates. That also directly adds to the national deficit, increasing the interest cost and driving up the balance, since no other source of funds is available.

So, to summarize, unnecessary COVID-related spending of $7 trillion has combined with chronic overspending, which caused inflation, which increased borrowing costs, which drove up the deficit, thus precipitating a recession which will deprive the government of revenues to pay down the surging debt load. Way to go, guys.

The principle response of the Biden administration has been denial. Our president claims the economy is thriving. A monthly .1% drop in the inflation rate was the pretext for claiming inflation was in decline. The national debt is never mentioned, nor are the untold trillions in future promises we have made to senior citizens and others.

Instead, Biden issued a probably unconstitutional executive order “canceling” unpaid college loans – i.e., transferring the liability to taxpayers. It was terrible public policy, penalizing those who had behaved responsibly and incentivizing student indebtedness in the future. It spent yet more money in a desperate attempt to bribe some votes for the midterm elections.

Yet there seems to be little taxpayer resentment. Why should they care? Their taxes aren’t going to increase. The obligation will be added to the great river of debt passed on to future generations—you know, those little people who don’t vote yet.

They will inherit an America feeble and impoverished, that will have forfeited its greatness because of our greed and selfishness. STOP THE SPENDING!

Dr. Thomas Patterson, former Chairman of the Goldwater Institute, is a retired emergency physician. He served as an Arizona State senator for 10 years in the 1990s, and as Majority Leader from 93-96. He is the author of Arizona’s original charter schools bill.

Over 1.3 Million Arizonans Will Have Billions In Student Loans Paid For By Taxpayers

Over 1.3 Million Arizonans Will Have Billions In Student Loans Paid For By Taxpayers

By Corinne Murdock |

At least 1,365,700 Arizonans will have about $19.2 billion in student debts forgiven through President Joe Biden’s student loan forgiveness handout. Those numbers could be much higher, since the U.S. Department of Education (USDE) noted in a Tuesday press release that they were unable to pinpoint the home states of over 5.1 million individuals with student debts.

According to the USDE, Arizona has approximately 554,900 Pell Grant recipients and 810,800 other types of borrowers. Pell Grant recipients will have $20,000 of their student loans forgiven (approximately $11.1 billion), while other borrowers will have $10,000 forgiven (approximately $8.1 billion).

The Biden administration’s plan prioritizes those with lower income. Nearly 90 percent of student relief funds will go to those earning less than $75,000 a year. For Arizona, that’s about $17.2 billion of the student loans that will be forgiven. 

Those who earn over $125,000 a year ($250,000 for households) are excluded from student debt forgiveness. That means 10 percent of the student relief funds will go to those who earn between $75,000 and $125,000 a year. For Arizona, that accounts for about $1.9 billion of the student loans that will be forgiven.

The USDE explained in a Tuesday press release that lower income borrowers were prioritized in order to “narrow the racial wealth gap.” The DOE noted that nearly 71 percent of Black individuals and 65 percent of Latino individuals with student debt were Pell Grant recipients.

In all, the Biden administration estimates that over 40 million Americans would have some amount of student debt forgiven, with nearly 20 million having all of their student debt forgiven entirely. 

In addition to issuing mass student loan forgiveness, the Biden administration extended its moratorium on student debt payments until January 2023. 

Members of Congress were quick to point out that Biden’s declaration on Sunday that the pandemic is over meant that his continued suspension of student loan repayments, as well as his plan to issue billions in debt forgiveness, weren’t justifiable. 

Congresswoman Debbie Lesko (R-AZ-08) called Biden’s student loan forgiveness program an “unconstitutional […] debt scheme” that oversteps his executive authority. 

Those who made payments on their student debt over the course of the pandemic will receive a refund of any payments that brought their debt below the maximum relief amount — but only if they didn’t pay their loan off in full. 

The Biden administration claimed that the program will cost the country about $240 billion in lost revenue over the next decade, but private estimates are higher. The Penn Wharton Budget Model estimated that the program would cost between $605 billion and $1 trillion.

Regardless of the losses, the Biden administration expressed hope that the student debt forgiveness would result in greater economic activity elsewhere such as the housing market. 

Applications for the student loan forgiveness program close on December 31, 2023. 


Corinne Murdock is a reporter for AZ Free News. Follow her latest on Twitter, or email tips to

More Americans Support Blanket Student Debt Forgiveness, Here’s Why They are Wrong

More Americans Support Blanket Student Debt Forgiveness, Here’s Why They are Wrong

By Chloe Anagnos |

A recent GoBankingRates survey found that over 50% of Americans want student-loan forgiveness for everyone with any student-loan debt. Considering Democratic lawmakers are hoping President Joe Biden will keep his promise to cancel $50,000 in student debt per person, this data could certainly be used for leverage. But while the number of Americans who now want to see all higher ed-related debt simply erased from the books is growing, it doesn’t mean that we should follow along.

Pandemic and lockdown-related unemployment coupled with a slow economic growth following the low reopening of most states have, indeed, made it difficult for countless Americans to pay off their debt. It is thus natural to see U.S. residents wanting to help those in difficult situations. However, blanket loan forgiveness isn’t a response to hardship. It isn’t even a response to the broken American higher education system. Instead, loan forgiveness will only remove our attention from the errors of subsidized higher education.

Despite politicians’ best efforts, there’s simply no bottomless pit of money anywhere. Taxpayers, and even the Federal Reserve, will eventually run dry.

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