NBC Hopes Biden Student Loan Bailout Will Attract Disaffected Youth

MRC Latino | April 9, 2024
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LESTER HOLT: And for his part, President Biden was courting young voters whose support for the president is slipping, according to polls. The White House announcing a plan to wipe out student debt for millions more Americans. Gabe Gutierrez is in Wisconsin with more. 

SETH MCCLURE: It felt almost impossible. 

GABE GUTIERREZ: Former public school teacher Seth McCclure had been paying off his student loans for more than 20 years, until $15,000 were forgiven in November. And he's praising the president. 

MCCLURE: Surprise, gratitude. I honestly didn't think it was actually going to happen, and it did. 

GUTIERREZ: He's one of the now 30 million Americans the White House says will have at least some of their federal student debt eliminated. 

JOE BIDEN: Today too many Americans, especially young people, are saddled with unsustainable debts in exchange for a college degree. 

GUTIERREZ: Today's announcement in battleground Wisconsin the largest one yet since the Supreme Court struck down the president's earlier attempt to forgive student loans. The White House is now using a different legal justification. But Republicans say taxpayers who did not go to college or already paid back their loans should not have to bail out the 13% of Americans with federal student debt. 

PROTESTERS: Genocide Joe has got to go! 

GUTIERREZ: The president making the move as he faces mounting outrage from some younger voters over the Israel-Hamas war. 

STUDENT: If Biden is supporting genocide, there is no lesser evil than that. So we won't vote for him. 

GUTIERREZ: In the 2020 NBC News exit poll, candidate Biden led former President Trump by 24 percentage points among voters under 30. But an NBC survey in January had president Biden up by just eight percentage points among that group. Another poll last month showed Mr. Trump ahead by 18 points among voters under 30. 

Are you excited to vote for President Biden? 

HAILEY RUDE: I would personally say no. 

GUTIERREZ: Hailey Rude and Maya Cohn are both sophomores at the University of Wisconsin Madison. 

MAYA COHN: I'm excited to vote for someone that's not Trump. But I wouldn't say that it is -- I'm excited for Biden.

GUTIERREZ: Even if the president ends up winning back some younger voters before November, a small change from 2020 could swing the election. Lester.

HOLT: All right, Gabe Gutierrez. Thank you.