Today, Education and Labor Committee Republican Leader Virginia Foxx (R-NC) and Oversight and Government Reform Committee Republican Leader James Comer (R-KY) are continuing their investigation into whether Biden Administration officials who worked on the student loan bailout will personally benefit from this financial windfall. In a letter to the White House Counsel, Stuart Delery, Republican Leaders Foxx and Comer are requesting information to determine whether Biden Administration political appointees have a conflict of interest and whether they or their family members are poised to benefit from this new government handout.
“We are investigating whether Biden Administration officials who worked on the student loan bailout will personally benefit from this financial windfall. It is unethical for public officials to craft policies from which they stand to benefit financially. Despite reports that White House political appointees collectively owe millions in student loan debt, the Office of Government Ethics informed Committee Republicans that no White House official sought an ethics waiver to work on student loan bailout proposals. We write to request documents and information to determine whether Biden Administration officials have a conflict of interest in advocating for and enacting this massive government handout in which they or their family members would receive a financial benefit at the expense of American taxpayers,”wrote the Republican lawmakers.
Recently, the Biden Administration announced that it will cancel up to $10,000 in student loans and up to $20,000 for Pell Grant beneficiaries for any individual with an income up to $125,000, or a household income of up to $250,000. The student loan bailout does not exempt political appointees with outstanding student loans. Reports indicate that thirty senior White House political appointees have millions in outstanding student loans. Collectively, these political appointees owe approximately $4.7 million, an amount which does not include loans of mid-level staffers who are not required to publicly disclose their debts due to junior status or pay thresholds. On June 15, 2022, Republican Leaders Foxx and Comer wrote to the Office of Government Ethics (OGE) raising ethical questions about this conflict of interest.
“President Biden’s student loan bailout is a wealth transfer from hardworking Americans to highly educated, upper-middle-class graduates. This bailout will cost the average taxpayer over $2,000. Many hardworking taxpayers do not hold a college degree or made difficult financial decisions to finance their degree either without borrowing from taxpayers or by paying off their student loans as promised. We are concerned that political officials may have committed serious ethics violations if they provided advice and counsel or drafted the bailout scheme from which they financially benefited,”continued the Republican lawmakers.