Biden and Xi Jinping meet, student loan forgiveness halted: 5 Things podcast

On today’s episode of the 5 Things podcast: President Biden presses China’s Xi to find ‘ways to work together’

USA TODAY White House correspondent Francesca Chambers has the latest from the G-20 summit. Plus, USA TODAY higher education reporter Chris Quintana looks at what happens next for President Joe Biden’s paused federal student loan forgiveness program.

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Hit play on the player above to hear the podcast and follow along with the transcript below. This transcript was automatically generated, and then edited for clarity in its current form. There may be some differences between the audio and the text.

Taylor Wilson:

Good morning. I’m Taylor Wilson and this is 5 Things you need to know Tuesday, the 15th of November 2022. Today a look at Biden and Xi’s meeting at the G20, plus, the latest on Biden’s now-frozen student loan forgiveness program, and a look at human rights being rolled back in Iran and Afghanistan.

The G20 Summit in Bali kicked off with a meeting between President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping yesterday. Producer PJ Elliott spoke with USA TODAY White House correspondent Francesca Chambers to find out where the two countries go from here.

Francesca Chambers:

President Biden said that he and Xi had a candid conversation and that they understood one another. One of the key things he said they talked about was China’s military activity in the Taiwan Straight. President Biden said that he is confident that Xi doesn’t plan to invade Taiwan militarily.

PJ Elliott:

Francesca, how long was the meeting and where do things go from here?

Francesca Chambers:

The meeting was three hours long and Present Biden left it feeling optimistic and saying that he thought the United States and China could work together.

Taylor Wilson:

So does this mean that things have calmed down between the US and China?

Francesca Chambers:

Well, the two sides agreed to keep talking. President Biden said he planned to send Secretary of State Antony Blinken to Beijing.

Taylor Wilson:

You can follow along with Francesca’s G20 coverage and more by giving a follow on Twitter at fran_chambers.

A federal appeals court has blocked President Joe Biden’s student loan forgiveness program. The latest move crushes the hopes of 26 million Americans who have applied for the relief and discourages millions more who were eligible. To find out more on what this latest court decision means and what happens next, I’m joined now by USA TODAY higher education reporter, Chris Quintana. Chris, thanks for being here.

Chris Quintana:

My pleasure. Thanks for having me.

Taylor Wilson:

So what was this latest Federal Appeals Court decision?

Chris Quintana:

Yeah, so that’s actually coming out of the 8th Circuit, and so that is related specifically to a case known as Nebraska v. Biden. That is six conservative states, Nebraska being one of them, who brought a legal challenge against the Biden Administration’s plan to cancel billions in student loan debt for millions of borrowers. There are a handful of legal challenges to the plan right now. The 8th Circuit, a panel of three judges, upheld the injunction that was requested.

Taylor Wilson:

All right. Where does the Student Loan Forgiveness Program stand now? Can people still apply?

Chris Quintana:

Yeah. So if you haven’t applied for the President’s Student Loan Forgiveness Plan, you can’t apply at this time. The administration says they are trying to work through the courts and to get it overturned, but they’re not currently taking applications. Now, if you previously applied, the administration still has your information, and so they say they have applications for 26 million people and they’re ready to forgive the debt of 16 million of those folks as well. So it is kind of a situation for borrowers who are kind of on the fence or curious. The only thing you can really do at this point is to wait.

Taylor Wilson:

And what happens next? Will the Biden administration appeal to the Supreme Court?

Chris Quintana:

It depends slightly on different cases. For a while, people had been following Nebraska v. Biden. The government shutting down the application window, that actually came from this Texas case, right? And so it is kind of a challenge for borrowers to kind of track this all the way through. But where I’m paying attention at this point is I am specifically looking at this 8th Circuit ruling and seeing kind of what the administration does as far as filing an appeal to the Supreme Court. I think that is probably where we’re going to see the most action most immediately.

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