Supreme Court strikes down Biden student loan relief plan

Supreme Court’s Groundbreaking Ruling on Biden’s Student Loan Relief Plan

Supreme Court Strikes Down Biden’s Student Loan Forgiveness Plan

The Supreme Court has made a significant decision, striking down the Biden administration’s plan to cancel billions of dollars of student loan debt for millions of Americans. Chief Justice John Roberts wrote the 6-3 decision, claiming that the federal government lacked the authority for the plan. However, Justice Elena Kagan pointed out in her dissent that it was the majority, not the government, that overreached in this case.

Anticipating this outcome, the White House has signaled “new actions” to protect student loan borrowers. The plan, announced last August, aimed to ease the “crushing” effects of student loans on the middle class. It provided debt relief for individuals with an annual income of less than $125,000 ($250,000 for households) in either 2020 or 2021.

During oral arguments, Republican appointees expressed skepticism about the government’s power to forgive such a large amount of debt, while Democratic appointees questioned the challengers’ legal standing to challenge debt relief. The court unanimously agreed that the challengers in a related case did not have legal standing, but the plan was ultimately struck down by the decision authored by Chief Justice Roberts.

The court’s first overreach, according to Justice Kagan, was deciding the case at all. The law at issue, the 2003 HEROES Act, allows the secretary of education to waive or modify provisions to protect borrowers affected by national emergencies. The Biden administration argued that the Covid-19 pandemic qualified as an emergency. However, the court majority believed that the government went too far in this case.

Justice Kagan criticized the majority for denying benefits to millions of Americans, stating that the assistance provided by the plan was deemed too significant. She also argued that the court should not have found standing in this case, as the states challenging the plan were ideological plaintiffs.

In his closing remarks, Chief Justice Roberts chastised Justice Kagan’s critique, emphasizing the importance of not misleading the public. However, the harm to the institution comes from court actions like Friday’s rulings, not from the justices using strong language in their opinions.

To read the full text of the opinion striking down Biden’s student loan forgiveness plan, click here.

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