The US Supreme Court (SCOTUS) recently made a ruling that has sparked controversy and anger among millions of Americans. Last Friday, SCOTUS struck down President Joe Biden’s plan to provide debt relief to millions of Americans struggling with student loans.
Under Biden’s plan, Pell Grant recipients who hold federal student loans would have been eligible for up to $20,000 in debt relief, while all federal loan holders would have been eligible for up to $10,000. The goal was to alleviate the financial burden on those who are most in need of assistance.
However, SCOTUS argued that the HEROES Act, which was passed in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, did not give the administration the authority to cancel such a large amount of debt. Chief Justice John Roberts stated, “The question here is not whether something should be done; it is who has the authority to do it.” The Court ruled that Congress would need to pass a bill explicitly authorizing a debt relief program.
This ruling is not entirely surprising considering the current composition of the Supreme Court. In recent years, the Court has made decisions that favor corporate interests and undermine civil rights. Last year, the Court broke with tradition by ruling on a hypothetical carbon emissions cap, leading many to question the Court’s commitment to the rule of law. Additionally, the Court overturned Roe v. Wade, disregarding centuries of legal precedent and further eroding civil rights.
Furthermore, the Court has struck down affirmative action and weakened voting rights protections. These decisions disproportionately affect minority communities and contribute to the ongoing struggle for equality in the United States.
The Court’s ruling on student debt relief comes as no surprise to those who have been following its decisions. The Court has consistently favored the wealthy and powerful over the needs of everyday Americans. Adding fuel to the fire, recent corruption scandals have cast doubt on the Court’s integrity.
Justice Clarence Thomas and Justice Samuel Alito have been implicated in receiving lavish gifts from wealthy donors. These gifts raise serious concerns about conflicts of interest and the Court’s ability to make impartial decisions. In the case of federal student debt relief, Justice Alito voted in favor of billionaire Paul Singer, who brought the case before the Court.
The Court’s track record and the ongoing corruption scandals have seriously damaged its reputation. Chief Justice Roberts acknowledged the criticism in a recent statement, admitting that some recent decisions have gone beyond the proper role of the judiciary. This acknowledgment is little comfort for the millions of Americans who are now left without the debt relief they desperately need.
While the Biden administration initially relied on the HEROES Act for its debt relief plan, it has now announced its intention to use the 1965 Higher Education Act as a legal basis for debt relief. However, many remain skeptical of the administration’s commitment to enacting meaningful change.
It is clear that the Supreme Court’s decisions are heavily influenced by ideology and corporate interests. This has led many to question the effectiveness of voting for the Democratic Party as a means of protecting rights and advocating for progressive change. The Court’s decisions have often contradicted the promises made by Democratic politicians, leaving many disillusioned and frustrated.
In order to regain trust and earn the support of voters, politicians must produce tangible results. Merely making promises is not enough. Americans deserve a judiciary that upholds the rule of law and prioritizes the needs of the people over the interests of the wealthy few.
The recent ruling on student debt relief is just one example of how the Supreme Court’s decisions can have far-reaching consequences. It is crucial for Americans to stay informed, hold politicians accountable, and demand justice for all.