Will the Supreme Court Cancel Biden’s Student Loan Forgiveness Plan?

Biden’s student loan forgiveness plans are expected to be blocked by the Supreme Court in June.

What’s happening: In August, President Joe Biden announced plans to forgive up to $20,000 in student loans per qualifying citizen. Nearly 26 million people applied before two federal courts issued orders blocking the program in November. The Supreme Court heard oral arguments on Tuesday for two cases challenging Biden’s plan and is expected to reach a verdict by June.

Potential consequences: Some Americans support student loan forgiveness, while others feel it rewards irresponsible financial decisions and is unfair to individuals who paid off their student loans or didn’t go to college. According to the Congressional Budget Office, Biden’s plan to forgive student debt would cost $400 billion. Critics argue it would increase inflation and potentially increase future tuition.

The cases: The two cases against the debt cancellation program argue that Biden and the Department of Education exceeded their authority. The Biden administration didn’t go through Congress, instead using the 2003 HEROES Act, which allows federal student loan relief under war or national emergencies. Biden saw the pandemic as such an emergency. The Court is expected to reject Biden’s student loan forgiveness. Justices seemed to agree that it fell under the “major questions doctrine,” which states that government initiatives with major political and economic consequences must be authorized by Congress.

Zoom out: While Biden may have scored political points in his attempt to cancel student debt and win a young voter bloc, his efforts ultimately failed. The Supreme Court plays by the Constitution, not politics, and will likely appear as the bad guy, as it did with the overturn of Roe v. Wade. Because of this, left-wing critics are already pushing for Supreme Court reform, like packing the Court.