I’m happy to be able to report some good news out of Washington for a change: Wednesday, President Trump signed a memo ordering the Department of Education to erase all federal student loan debt owed by veterans who are severely and permanently disabled.
CNBC recently reported that the government has been seeking student loan repayments from more than 40,000 severely disabled veterans who’ve been deemed unable to work, and more than 25,000 are in default. The government already has a program for seeking debt forgiveness, but only 8500 vets have applied. It’s not clear why; maybe they aren’t aware of it, or the process is too long and complicated, or some vets just have too much pride to ask. Trump’s memo orders the VA and Education Secretaries to develop a process to swiftly and effectively eliminate their debts.
Trump told the vets affected, “You fought courageously for your country, and now we’re fighting courageously for you,” adding, “Sleep well tonight.”
I can already imagine Democrats raising the “What about” cry, as in “What about all the other people who are struggling with student loan debt?” By all means, reform the process to make those loans cheaper and easier to repay. But if there were ever an example of a class that truly deserves special consideration, it's disabled veterans. This shouldn’t be taken as a first step to the federal government paying off everyone’s student loan debt. Disabled veterans are the only ones who have paid a higher price than anyone should ever have to pay, and they paid it to protect our freedom. If anyone owes a debt, then we owe one to them.