House Republicans attack Alan Cohn, Eric Lynn over student loans
Eric Lynn, Alan Cohn

Lynn Cohn
Would the Democrats benefit from a Joe Biden plan to forgive debt?

Primary season isn’t over and national Republicans are already researching Democratic congressional candidates’ personal finances.

The National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) blasted Eric Lynn, the Democratic nominee in Florida’s 13th Congressional District, and Alan Cohn, a Democrat running in Florida’s 15th Congressional District, for carrying hefty student loans.

House Republicans point toward reports President Joe Biden’s administration plans to pursue forgiving up to $10,000 in student loans for borrowers.

Cohn holds between $15,000 and $50,000 in student loans, according to his candidate financial disclosure. Lynn bears between $10,000 and $15,000 in debt.

“Is Alan Cohn on board with this irresponsible plan?” reads an email from NRCC spokeswoman Camille Gallo.

She also pointed at a Momentive poll, conducted for CNBC, that shows 59% of Americans fear forgiving student loan debt will lead to greater inflation.

“But Eric Lynn doesn’t care,” Gallo wrote in an email about Lynn, noting the plan would personally benefit Lynn by clearing all or most of his personal debt.

Lynn, for his part, said he would support a loan forgiveness effort but with certain restrictions.

“Eric Lynn supports forgiveness of up to $10,000 in student loans for borrowers making less than $100,000, which would help working families who are struggling to deal with the rising cost of living thanks to Republican tax-breaks for the ultra-wealthy at the expense of everyday Americans,” reads a statement from his campaign.

“Lynn is the only candidate in FL-13 who will always stand up for working families, Veterans, and Seniors.”

The attacks were notable not just for the substantive issue of student loans but regarding where the NRCC set its sights.

Lynn seeks to succeed Democratic U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist in CD 13, an uphill climb after Florida’s redistricting process shifted the Pinellas County seat from one Biden won in the 2020 election to one where Republican Donald Trump led by 7 percentage points.

After it became clear the map would stand this election cycle, all Democrats but Lynn dropped out. The Barack Obama administration member will face whichever Republican emerges from a GOP Primary held today.

Cohn, meanwhile, is still running in a five-candidate Primary in CD 15, where his main competition is former MoveOn videographer Eddie Geller. A Democratic Primary Tuesday will determine the nominee running in the district, with five Republicans separately fighting it out for the GOP nod. The district has no incumbent. Trump won CD 15 under the new lines, but barely, with 50.86% of the vote to Biden’s 47.74%.

Jacob Ogles

Jacob Ogles has covered politics in Florida since 2000 for regional outlets including SRQ Magazine in Sarasota, The News-Press in Fort Myers and The Daily Commercial in Leesburg. His work has appeared nationally in The Advocate, Wired and other publications. Events like SRQ’s Where The Votes Are workshops made Ogles one of Southwest Florida’s most respected political analysts, and outlets like WWSB ABC 7 and WSRQ Sarasota have featured his insights. He can be reached at [email protected].


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