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Just 3 Of 10 Approve Of Biden Student Loan Handouts

President Joe Biden, right, bids farewell as he departs graduation ceremonies at South Carolina State University as U.S. House Majority whip Jim Clyburn, left, waves, on Friday, Dec. 17, 2021, in Orangeburg, S.C. (AP Photo/Meg Kinnard)

President Biden’s student loan handouts, a campaign priority for the Democrat incumbent, received approval from just 30% of Americans, according to the results of a new national poll released on Tuesday.

Three in 10 U.S. adults say they approve of how Biden has handled the issue of student loan debt, while 4 in 10 disapprove, a new poll from the University of Chicago Harris School of Public Policy and The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research found. The others are neutral or say they do not know enough to say.

Among those responsible for unpaid student loan debt, either for themselves or for a family member, just 36% of respondents approve of Biden’s handling of the handouts, while 34% disapprove.

The results reveal a deep divide over the issue of student debt relief even as Biden is pressing ahead with a new cancelation plan in a bid to energize young adults and Black and Hispanic Americans. Those groups are more likely to prioritize student loan relief but have flagging approval for the president, according to the AP.

After Biden’s first attempt at a widespread student loan handout was struck down by the Supreme Court last year, he proposed a more targeted plan offering relief to certain categories of borrowers. The Biden administration has separately erased student debt for about 4 million people through existing programs, the AP reported.

The results showed that Americans overall had a dimmer view on the Supreme Court’s handling of student loan handouts: 15% approve of its work on the issue and around one-quarter disapprove.

The poll of 1,309 adults was conducted May 16-21, 2024, using a sample drawn from NORC’s probability-based AmeriSpeak Panel, which is designed to be representative of the U.S. population. The margin of sampling error for all respondents is plus or minus 3.7 percentage points.

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