December 5, 2022

The Justices Will Weigh ‘Forgiving’ Student Loans

The Supreme Court will decide what is clearly a significant separation-of-powers case.

The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to take up a significant case regarding the separation-of-powers doctrine inherent in the Constitution. At issue is whether Joe Biden has the authority to bypass Congress and unilaterally cancel billions of dollars in student loan debt.

The justices agreed to hear the case after both the Fifth Circuit and Eighth Circuit Courts of Appeal ordered a pause on the implementation of Biden’s debt cancellation plan until lawsuits are adjudicated. It is telling that SCOTUS elected to jump in and hear the case rather than let the lower courts rule on the cases. This indicates that the justices see this as a significant case that needs to be dealt with sooner rather than later.

Considering the comments of North Texas District Judge Mark Pittman, who called Biden’s cancellation plan an “unconstitutional exercise of Congress’s legislative power,” it’s little wonder that the Court would want to weigh in before the order has a chance to go into effect. Judge Pittman further contended, “No one can plausibly deny that it is either one of the largest delegations of legislative power to the executive branch, or one of the largest exercises of legislative power without congressional authority in the history of the United States.”

Biden’s gambit is reminiscent of Barack Obama’s action on Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), as Biden, like Obama, first asserted that he did not have the authority to unilaterally cancel upwards of $20,000 per borrower in federal student loan debt a few months before he went ahead and ordered it anyway. Obama’s unilateral implementation of DACA was just as unconstitutional as Biden’s student loan cancellation plan, but since DACA went into effect it has proven nearly impossible to end, and that is the same problem presented by Biden’s plan. Once the cancellations start happening, good luck trying to reverse course.

It would appear that the Biden administration knows that it stands on weak legal ground — Biden stretched the 2003 Heroes Act, which gives him authority over military student loans, to include the entire American population. Therefore, the administration is arguing that the six Republican lead states that brought one of the lawsuits don’t have legal standing, irrespective of the merits of their argument.

Thankfully, it does not appear that the Court agrees with that argument, as the justices simply could have let the issue play out in the lower courts before stepping in. “The Court’s decision to hear the case on an expedited basis suggests at least four Justices are concerned about the weighty constitutional questions,” observes the Wall Street Journal editorial board. “If the Justices agreed with the Administration’s argument that the states lacked standing to sue because they aren’t really harmed by the loan cancellation, the Court could have simply vacated the Eighth Circuit’s injunction. The cancellations would have proceeded, and the issue would be moot.”

The Court will hear arguments in February with an expected ruling coming in June. In the meantime, Biden has extended for nine more months the pause on student loan repayments justified by the COVID pandemic he said months ago was “over.” The political consequences of the Court’s ruling promise to be far beyond a question of canceling billions in student loan debt and putting American taxpayers on the hook for it. Reeling back the executive branch’s power overreach is the bigger issue.

Start a conversation using these share links:

Who We Are

The Patriot Post is a highly acclaimed weekday digest of news analysis, policy and opinion written from the heartland — as opposed to the MSM’s ubiquitous Beltway echo chambers — for grassroots leaders nationwide. More

What We Offer

On the Web

We provide solid conservative perspective on the most important issues, including analysis, opinion columns, headline summaries, memes, cartoons and much more.

Via Email

Choose our full-length Digest or our quick-reading Snapshot for a summary of important news. We also offer Cartoons & Memes on Monday and Alexander’s column on Wednesday.

Our Mission

The Patriot Post is steadfast in our mission to extend the endowment of Liberty to the next generation by advocating for individual rights and responsibilities, supporting the restoration of constitutional limits on government and the judiciary, and promoting free enterprise, national defense and traditional American values. We are a rock-solid conservative touchstone for the expanding ranks of grassroots Americans Patriots from all walks of life. Our mission and operation budgets are not financed by any political or special interest groups, and to protect our editorial integrity, we accept no advertising. We are sustained solely by you. Please support The Patriot Fund today!

The Patriot Post and Patriot Foundation Trust, in keeping with our Military Mission of Service, are proud sponsors of the National Medal of Honor Heritage Center, the Congressional Medal of Honor Society, Folds of Honor, Honoring the Sacrifice, Warrior Freedom Service Dogs, Officer Christian Fellowship, the Air University Foundation, the Naval War College Foundation, and the Naval Aviation Museum Foundation.


“Our cause is noble; it is the cause of mankind!” —George Washington

Join us in prayer for our nation, that good and righteous national leaders would rise and prevail, and that division would be healed so we would be united as Americans. We pray also for the protection of our military Patriots, first responders and their families, and comfort for veterans who are suffering.

The Patriot Post is protected speech, as enumerated in the First Amendment and enforced by the Second Amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America, in accordance with the endowed and unalienable Rights of All Mankind.

Copyright © 2023 The Patriot Post. All Rights Reserved.

The Patriot Post does not support Internet Explorer. We recommend installing the latest version of Microsoft Edge, Mozilla Firefox, or Google Chrome.