U.S. appeals court rejects Biden's bid to revive student debt plan

  • In US
  • 2022-12-01 03:13:15Z
  • By Reuters

By Nate Raymond

(Reuters) -A federal appeals court on Wednesday declined to put on hold a Texas judge's ruling that said President Joe Biden's plan to cancel hundreds of billions of dollars in student loan debt was unlawful.

The New Orleans-based 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected the Biden administration's request to pause a judge's Nov. 10 order vacating the $400 billion student debt relief program in a lawsuit pursued by a conservative advocacy group.

The decision by Fort Worth, Texas-based U.S. District Judge Mark Pittman was one of two nationally that has prevented the U.S. Department of Education under Biden from moving forward with granting debt relief to millions of borrowers.

The administration has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to similarly lift an order by the St. Louis-based 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that, at the request of six Republican-led states, had barred it from cancelling student loans.

A three-judge panel of the 5th Circuit in Wednesday's brief order declined to put Pittman's ruling on hold while the administration appealed his decision, but the court directed that the appeal be heard on an expedited basis.

The panel included two Republican appointees and one judge nominated by former Democratic President Barack Obama. Pittman was appointed by former Republican President Donald Trump.

Biden announced in August that the U.S. government would forgive up to $10,000 in student loan debt for borrowers making less than $125,000 a year, or $250,000 for married couples. Students who received Pell Grants to benefit lower-income college students will have up to $20,000 of their debt canceled.

During the 2020 presidential campaign, Biden promised to help debt-saddled former college students. Biden's program has drawn opposition from Republicans, who have portrayed it as shifting the burden of debt from wealthy elites to lower-income Americans.

The Congressional Budget Office in September calculated that the debt forgiveness program run would cost taxpayers about $400 billion.

About 26 million Americans have applied for student loan forgiveness, and the U.S. Department of Education had already approved requests from 16 million by the time Pittman issued his ruling.

Pittman ruled in a lawsuit by two borrowers who were partially or fully ineligible for the loan forgiveness who were backed by the Job Creators Network Foundation, a conservative advocacy group founded by Bernie Marcus, a co-founder of Home Depot.

The judge said it was irrelevant if Biden's plan was good public policy because the program was "one of the largest exercises of legislative power without congressional authority in the history of the United States."

Pittman wrote that the HEROES Act - a law that provides loan assistance to military personnel and that was relied upon by the Biden administration to enact the relief plan - did not authorize the program.

(Reporting by Nate Raymond in Boston; Editing by Tom Hogue, Robert Birsel)


More Related News

'Not a gang discussion': Debt crisis still seeking a savior

Who's going to steer away from the cliff? Inquiring minds in Congress, on Wall Street and across the country want to know. Here are some answers.

Outgoing White House Chief Of Staff Defends Biden Amid Classified Document Hunt
Outgoing White House Chief Of Staff Defends Biden Amid Classified Document Hunt

"The hallmark of our handling of this has been cooperation," Ron Klain said.

Biden approval steady after document discovery: AP-NORC Poll
Biden approval steady after document discovery: AP-NORC Poll
  • World
  • 2023-02-02 05:17:34Z

More U.S. adults disapprove than approve of the way President Joe Biden has handled the discovery of classified documents at his home and former office, a...

How Medicare and Social Security benefits factor into the Kevin McCarthy debt ceiling fight
How Medicare and Social Security benefits factor into the Kevin McCarthy debt ceiling fight

Republicans say Social Security and Medicare won't be part of debt ceiling negotiations between Speaker Kevin McCarthy and President Joe Biden.

McCarthy describes
McCarthy describes 'good' first meeting with Biden, but 'no agreements' on debt ceiling

President Joe Biden on Wednesday met with Speaker Kevin McCarthy to discuss the debt ceiling deadline and other issues but have not reached an agreement.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply


Top News: US