The president of the Job Creators Network is voicing his support for a package of legislation introduced by a group of Republican senators to reduce the costs of higher education and student loan debt.

“While we wait on the Supreme Court’s ruling on Job Creators Network Foundation’s challenge to the Biden administration’s illegal student loan bailout, Senate Republicans have introduced legislation to get to the root of the college debt crisis, as JCNF has long argued,” Alfredo Ortiz, president and chief executive officer of the Job Creators Network, said in a written statement.

“Their loan transparency initiatives and elimination of inflationary Graduate PLUS loans will help reduce the amount of college debt students take out in the first place,” Ortiz said of the GOP lawmakers.

“But more needs to be done. College presidents should be forced to testify before Congress and explain why they’ve raised tuition at double the rate of inflation over the last generation. This tuition price gouging is responsible for the student debt crisis,” he said, adding:

They must explain why they can’t follow Purdue University, which has frozen college tuition for 12 consecutive years. Colleges, not taxpayers, must be held strongly accountable for the student loan mess.

Last August, President Joe Biden announced plans to forgive $10,000 of debt for individual student loan borrowers who make less than $125,000 per year ($250,000 for households) and to forgive $20,000 for borrowers who received a Pell Grant. 

Five Senate Republicans—Bill Cassidy of Louisiana, Chuck Grassley of Iowa, John Cornyn of Texas, Tommy Tuberville of Alabama, and Tim Scott of South Carolina—introduced a package Wednesday called the Lowering Education Costs and Debt Act, which includes five pieces of legislation.

The GOP senators’ package includes measures called the College Transparency Act, the Informed Student Borrower Act, the Understanding the True Cost of College Act, the Graduate Opportunity and Affordable Loans Act, and the Streamlining Accountability and Value in Education for Students Act.

“Our federal higher education financing system contributes more to the problem than the solution. Colleges and universities using the availability of federal loans to increase their tuitions have left too many students drowning in debt without a path for success,” Cassidy said in a press release.

Earlier this month, the Senate voted, mostly along partisan lines, to adopt a joint resolution aimed at blocking Biden’s student loan forgiveness plan. 

The final vote was 52-46, with Sens. Joe Manchin, D-W.V.; Jon Tester, D-Mont.; and Kyrsten Sinema, I-Ariz., voting with Republicans. Two senators did not vote. 

Cassidy and Rep. Bob Good, R-Va., had introduced the resolution March 27 in the House and the Senate. The House adopted it May 24 in a 218-203 vote. Biden vetoed the measure June 7.

The Supreme Court is expected to rule in the near future on two cases pertaining to Biden’s plan to “forgive” student loan debt. The nation’s highest court heard oral arguments in February. 

GianCarlo Canaparo and Jack Fitzhenry of The Heritage Foundation’s Meese Center for Legal and Judicial Studies criticized the Biden plan in a March 1 commentary for The Daily Signal. (The Daily Signal is Heritage’s multimedia news organization.)

“The administration has relied on an emergency-powers law called the HEROES Act, which was passed in response to the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks,” Canaparo and Fitzhenry wrote. “President Joe Biden claims that he can use that law to cancel student loan debt for more than 95% of all borrowers.”

Editor’s note: This article has been corrected to reflect the date of the quoted commentary by Canaparo and Fitzhenry. 

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