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Senator Professor Warren returned to her wheelhouse on Tuesday, releasing a plan on reforming the country’s bankruptcy system. This is the area in which she first came to public prominence, and the area in which she first got crossways with a certain U.S. senator from Delaware, which is to credit card companies what Louisiana is to chemical waste. This produced a memorable bit of C-SPAN lore. The new plan dovetails precisely with what SPW has been doing for most of her adult life and for all of her public career.
But there are still serious problems with our bankruptcy laws today, thanks in large part to that bad 2005 bill. That’s why I’m announcing my plan to repeal the harmful provisions in the 2005 bankruptcy bill and overhaul consumer bankruptcy rules in this country to give Americans a better chance of getting back on their feet. My plan will:
Make it easier for people being crushed by debt to obtain relief through bankruptcy.
Expand people’s rights to take care of themselves and their children while they are in the bankruptcy process.
End the absurd rules that make it nearly impossible to discharge student loan debt in bankruptcy.
Let more people protect their homes and cars in bankruptcy so they can start from a firm foundation when they start to pick up the pieces and rebuild their financial lives.
Help address shameful racial and gender disparities that plague our bankruptcy system.
Close loopholes that allow the wealthy and corporate creditors to abuse the bankruptcy system at the expense of everyone else.
Warren’s plan is deeply detailed, both in its proposals and in its diagnosis of how badly that 2005 bankruptcy bill has torn up the lives of the people who came under it. This, of course, has resulted in a fair blizzard of horse-race headlines.
Politico: Warren takes shot at Biden with new bankruptcy plan.
HuffPost: Elizabeth Warren Takes Shot At Joe Biden With New Bankruptcy Reform Plan
Bloomberg: Warren Takes Aim at Biden With Plan to Bolster Bankruptcy Rights
None of these headlines are wrong. Biden and Warren were bound to collide on this issue, given Biden’s ownership of the 2005 law, and it very likely will set off some sparks in next week’s debate. But, sometimes, the railbird aspect of political coverage can get depressing.