On Thursday, a federal judge declared that President Joe Biden's student loan debt forgiveness plan was unconstitutional. The judge ordered that the program to be dissolved.
US District Judge Mark Pittman, a Trump-appointed judge, called the program “one of the largest exercises of legislative power without congressional authority” in the history of the country.
In his 26-page order, US District Judge Mark Pittman, who was appointed by former president Donald Trump, made the ruling that the current president’s administration had no “clear congressional authorization” to create the loan forgiveness program. The program was estimated to eliminate approximately $430 billion in student loan debt for over 40 million Americans.
In a statement Thursday night, Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona said that the Biden administration is planning to appeal the ruling.
“We believe strongly that the Biden-Harris Student Debt Relief Plan is lawful and necessary to give borrowers and working families breaking room as they recover from the pandemic and to ensure they succeed when repayment starts,” he said.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre made a statement on Thursday, where he said that “extreme Republican special interests” were behind the legal opposition to the forgiveness plan.
She said the president was determined” to carry out the plan.
"We will never stop fighting for hardworking Americans most in need – no matter how many roadblocks our opponents and special interests try to put in our way,” she said.
The website where people register for loan forgiveness is blocked and has a notice that says. “… As a result, at this time, we are not accepting applications. We are seeking to overturn those orders… If you've already applied, we'll hold your application.”