On November 10th, 2022, Texas state Federal Judge Mark T Pittman ruled that Joe Biden’s Student Loan Forgiveness Program was unconstitutional based on the separation of powers between the branches of government. Specifically that without clear congressional authorization, Joe Biden is unable to put this forgiveness plan into place. The US 2022 Midterm elections were held two days prior on November 8th, 2022.
The Constitution vests “all legislative powers” in Congress. This power, however, can be delegated to the executive branch. But if the executive branch seeks to use that delegated power to create a law of vast economic and political significance, it must have clear congressional authorization. If not, the executive branch unconstitutionally exercises “legislative powers” vested in Congress. In this case, the HEROES Act—a law to provide loan assistance to military personnel defending our nation—does not provide the executive branch clear congressional authorization to create a $400 billion student loan forgiveness program. The Program is thus an unconstitutional exercise of Congress’s legislative power and must be vacated.
In response to this ruling,
“We are disappointed in the decision of the Texas court to block loan relief moving forward. Amidst efforts to block our debt relief program, we are not standing down,” said Education Secretary Miguel Cardona. “The Department of Justice has appealed today’s decision on our behalf, and we will continue to keep borrowers informed about our efforts to deliver targeted relief.”
The pdf of the filing can be found below:
The case is Brown v. Department of Education, Number 4:22-cv-0908 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas.