Biden's Student Debt Forgiveness Gets Hung Up In Court - and Here's Why

P. Gardner Goldsmith | October 23, 2022

In moves coming “fast and furious,” the federal courts saw small-government fans become disappointed, then hopeful, as Thursday and Friday brought intense action on two separate “Student Loan Forgiveness” suits – action that first came from the U.S. Supreme Court, then emerged from a lower federal court.

First, the Supreme Court.

Just hours after plaintiffs filed emergency paperwork, Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett Thursday, October 20, denied their request to block implementation of Joe Biden’s expansion of the already-extant student loan forgiveness started in 2009 when he was a vice president, and expanded in 2014 (many people forget that Biden and Obama already started a disastrous loan write-off scheme that goes on today for many who work in the “public sector”).

Barrett’s denial culminated a flurry of activity over three days, wherein Wisconsin-based Brown County Taxpayers Association, one of the many that are driving different legal challenges through various courts, sought a temporary stay of the plan, which is expected by researchers at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, to cost taxpayers $600 billion over 40 years.

As John Fritze reports, for USA Today:

“Associate Justice Amy Coney Barrett denied the request to temporarily block the program's implementation a day after it was filed without explanation, as is often the case on the court's emergency ‘shadow’ docket. Barrett declined the request Thursday without referring the appeal to the full court.”

But Barrett’s denial implies her belief in the validity of the lower court ruling, a ruling in which Judge William Griesbach of the Green Bay Division of U.S. District Court's Eastern District of Wisconsin claimed that the Brown County Taxpayers Association didn’t have standing to claim injury.


Sarah Lehr reported October 6, for the (tax-subsidized) Wisconsin Public Radio:

“The conservative Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty, or WILL, brought the lawsuit Tuesday on behalf of the Brown County Taxpayers Association. WILL argued taxpayers would be harmed by being forced to shoulder the costs of the U.S. Department of Education's plan to cancel some federal student loan debt.

But Judge William Griesbach of the Green Bay Division of U.S. District Court's Eastern District of Wisconsin questioned whether the plaintiffs had made a sufficient case that the program would cause them ‘irreparable harm’ and wrote in his order Thursday that the principle of ‘taxpayer standing’ wasn't sufficient to establish jurisdiction in federal court.”

By that, the judge means that you, as a taxpayer who will be forced to pay for the loans, cannot claim that this new scheme will injure you, thus, you don’t have standing to ask for injunctive relief.

Which gives us pause.

Before we get into the brighter side of this multi-day spasm of activity over Biden’s Student Loan “Forgiveness” plot, let’s reflect on what Barrett really did when allowing the lower court decision to stand – because looking at this helps one really grasp the fact that, once a gang of thugs establishes a “state” – including its “justice” apparatus – they hold the cards.

The definitions of “harm,” “crime,” “just compensation,” “standing” and sundry other key words that, throughout most of Anglo-Saxon, Judeo-Christian tradition, were determined by families, neighbors, tribes, and small, non-state adherents to Common Law, have been usurped by agents of the state.

Despite harm being subjectively experienced, and best adjudicated by small, voluntarily-agreed-to systems, in the eyes of the government, your idea of harm is irrelevant. The court system that automatically gets your tax cash – upon threat of sending you to jail – will deliver its arbitrary definitions regardless of your views, and, even as you pay for its monopolistic hegemony over you, it will deny that forcing you to pay for it is in any way injurious to you.

The fact that the so-called rules under which the agents of the US government claim they operate not only claims for the feds no power to hand out “student loans”, let alone “forgive them” is only shadowed by the larger monstrosity that the entire Department of Education is not sanctioned by the US Constitution.

That means the people in DC who continue to fund it and run it are engaging in fraud.

But remember, you’re not hurt by that. Everything’s cool.

The mafia is in town, but shut up about it.

Amy Coney Barrett is way off base. The SCOTUS easily could hear this case. The matter of "standing depending on being injured" is dependent on how the court views "injury" -- and I certainly think that a government taking my money to pay off student loans, thus increasing the federal debt and forcing it to borrow more from the fiat-currency-creating Federal Reserve? I'd say that hurts every person alive, over and above the aforementioned FRAUD.

Ahh, but there’s hope, yet… in the second case that flashed Friday in the federal court system.

Responding Friday to a challenge brought by the Attorneys General of Missouri, Arkansas, Nebraska, Kansas, Iowa, and South Carolina – all of which claimed incipient harm to their budgets and which contain branches of Missouri-based student loan manager, MOHELA, which will see massive drops in revenue should Biden’s plan go through – the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals applied a temporary injunction against Biden acting on his scheme.

The debate here is a bit more complicated, if one focuses on the myriad layers of legalese and statutes the feds have created to distract people from the basics of the Constitution and human ethics.

It has to do with the so-called “HEROES” Act.

Related: Sen. 'Infrastructure' Bill Sends Leviathan Tentacles Deeper Into Your Internet | MRCTV

What a lovely title for something that flies in the face of the Constitution.

As Jim Salter reports for the South Florida Sun Sentinel:

“The six states sued in September. Lawyers for the administration countered that the Department of Education has ‘broad authority to manage the federal student financial aid programs.’ A court filing stated that the 2003 Higher Education Relief Opportunities for Students Act, or HEROES Act, allows the secretary of education to waive or modify terms of federal student loans in times of war or national emergency.

‘COVID-19 is such an emergency,’ the filing stated.

The HEROES Act was enacted after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks to help members of the military. The Justice Department says the law allows Biden to reduce or erase student loan debt during a national emergency. Republicans argue the administration is misinterpreting the law, in part because the pandemic no longer qualifies as a national emergency.”

The Eighth Circuit decided that there was enough question about this to allow a hold on Biden’s plan, thus indicating that the plaintiffs in these six states will bring their argument to the SCOTUS for a final hearing.

But here’s the thing… Their U.S. Constitution doesn’t allow a President to “declare an emergency,” regardless of the problem. The entire foundation of the HEROES Act is unsound because the entire foundation of the “emergency” is unsound, and Americans who have not been blinded by generation upon generation of normalcy bias -- whereby people grow up with these terms and never question them – those CLEAR-MINDED people are aware of the charade and its fake terminology.

What we have is a tax-funded Circuit Court finding in favor of putting a temporary stop to Biden’s unconstitutional Student Loan Forgiveness scheme, but merely because the majority of judges in the Eighth Circuit interpreted “emergency” differently than the leftists in D.C.

The actual reality that it doesn’t matter how they define “emergency”? That’s not part of their calculus.

Which ought to tell us something about wordplay, the Constitution, and our rights beneath it all.

As Salter notes:

“The plan, announced in August, would cancel $10,000 in student loan debt for those making less than $125,000 or households with less than $250,000 in income. Pell Grant recipients, who typically demonstrate more financial need, will get an additional $10,000 in debt forgiven.”

Now we wait to see what the Supreme Court might put on its docket for next session. If someone on the Court like Barrett doesn’t reverse this Eighth Circuit decision, the administrative stay on the “loan forgiveness” will remain, and many students will have to begin paying their loans in January.

For an extended look at the unconstitutional history of federal involvement in student loans, and the effect this easy-money system has had on college tuition inflation, please visit this piece I wrote for MRCTV.

Related: Biden Announces 'Student Loan Debt Plan,' Will Forgive Some Debt for Borrowers 'Earning Less than $125K' | MRCTV