Supreme Court debates legality of Biden’s student debt relief plan

Supreme Court debates legality of Biden's student debt relief plan

The Supreme Court heard arguments on the legality of President Joe Biden’s plan to write off $430 billion in student debt for some 40 million borrowers.

An attorney for the administration answered questions from the justices as they heard the case, representing a kind of test of the executive branch’s authority.

Recall that nine Supreme Court justices are hearing the Biden administration’s appeal of two lower court decisions blocking a policy he announced last August over lawsuits by six conservative states and two student loan borrowers opposing the plan.

The administration’s plan calls for forgiveness of up to $10,000 in student debt for borrowers whose income is below $125,000 a year. It also proposes debt forgiveness of up to $20,000 for Pell Grant recipients – which would affect about 6 million students from low-income families.

Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts considered whether the scope of the aid announced by Biden could be considered a simple modification of the existing student-loan program, or whether it fell under the concept of “major issues” that the president must coordinate with Congress.

The plaintiffs argue that the Biden administration has failed to provide an adequate legal justification for the program.

In a message posted on Twitter, Biden wrote, “This aid is critical to the more than 40 million Americans who are recovering from the economic crisis caused by the pandemic. We are confident that it is legitimate.”

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