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Aide to Rep. Marcy Kaptur boasts of receiving Biden student loan bailout — which his boss opposed

Ben Kamens Communications Director, Office of Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur (OH-09) U.S. House of Representatives

A staffer for a Democratic congresswoman boasted online Wednesday that President Biden’s student loan bailout — an executive action that his boss publicly opposed in the past — had been extended to him

“Just got a call to let me know my student debt has been canceled,” Rep. Marcy Kaptur’s (D-Ohio) communications director Ben Kamens posted on X.

“This is why elections matter. Thanks @JoeBiden,” added Kamens, sharing a picture of the form which read, “Congratulations! The Biden-Harris Administration has forgiven your federal student loan(s) … in full.”

Kamens had $8,250 in student loans dating as far back as 2010 forgiven by the Education Department’s Saving on a Valuable Education (SAVE) Plan, which is expected to bilk US taxpayers of $475 billion over the next 10 years.

The Kaptur spokesman netted around $80,000 in 2023, according to the congressional staff salary database on LegiStorm.

In Ohio’s Ninth Congressional District, which Kpatur represents, the median household income was $62,077, US Census Bureau data shows.

Kamens’ post had received more than 18.7 million views as of Thursday morning, with many netizens slamming the Kaptur aide and pointing out the address listed on the form was a half-million dollar house in Pennsylvania.

“No doubt the working people of America are thrilled to step in because, despite having received the service you took out the loan to buy, you couldn’t be bothered to pay off $8,250 in principal in fourteen years—which is $589/year,” National Review senior editor Charles C.W. Cooke remarked acidly on X.

“You’re welcome. Freeloader,” added Fox News late-night host Greg Gutfeld.

“Yes I enjoy ‘free’ stuff that other people pay for as well,” snarked Ilya Shapiro of the Manhattan Institute.

“‘This is why elections matter’ is quite a damning indictment of the way politics is currently functioning,” added Jeryl Bier. “We’ve gone from a revolution over ‘taxation without representation’ to ‘vote for those who will tax others to pay off my personal debts.’”

Kamens did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Biden, 81, announced the SAVE Plan in July 2023, weeks after the Supreme Court overturned his earlier $430 billion student debt cancellation attempt for more than 40 million borrowers.

Kamens did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Kaptur had criticized the earlier move by the Biden administration to unilaterally forgive the debt, citing political, fiscal and constitutional issues.

“What about the people who paid off their loans?” she was quoted as saying in August 2022 by the Sandusky Register.

“What about the people who didn’t rack up that level of debt? What about people who put college on hold? What about the systemic problems we have in the student loan program, where you walk into an admissions office at a college and they give you a credit card, and you get the money, and you can spend the money on a car or a vacation or whatever, and then the student doesn’t graduate,” Kaptur went on.

“There was no consultation with Congress. The last time I checked the Constitution, you can’t impact the bottom line of the federal treasury without some bill moving through Congress,” she added.

“I think the president probably overreached his authority on this one.”

The Supreme Court ruled 6-3 against Education Secretary Miguel Cardona’s implementation of the student debt cancellation, with Chief Justice John Roberts saying he lacked “‘clear congressional authorization’ to justify the challenged program.”

“The question here is not whether something should be done; it is who has the authority to do it,” Roberts wrote in the majority opinion. “So too here, where the Secretary of Education claims the authority, on his own, to release 43 million borrowers from their obligations to repay $430 billion in student loans. The Secretary has never previously claimed powers of this magnitude.”

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