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Federal Court of Appeals Temporarily Blocks Biden’s Student Debt Transfer


A federal appeals court temporarily blocked President Joe Biden’s student debt transfer on Friday, just hours after he bragged that the courts were on his “side” on the issue.

The decision represented a massive setback for the beleaguered White House’s efforts to secure victories ahead of the November 8 midterm elections.

Earlier this year, Biden ordered Education Secretary Miguel Cardona to use routine student loan adjustment legislation to transfer perhaps $400 billion in student debt from millions of Americans who knowingly incurred this debt to tens of millions of Americans who did not go to college or have already paid off their college loans.

It would be one of the largest wealth transfers in US history, and it was never authorized by Congress. It was also a transparent attempt to woo college-age voters.

Nebraska Attorney General Doug Peterson and Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt — who is the Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate — led a six-state coalition to file suit in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri , arguing that the law cited by the White House does not give Cardona the power to take such drastic measures.

That court on Thursday dismissed the lawsuit for lack of standing, finding that the states failed to connect the allegedly unlawful action to any harm suffered by the states.

Biden reacted Friday by telling a student audience in his home state of Delaware, “You know, they fought us in court. But just yesterday, a state court and the Supreme Court said, “No, we’re on Biden’s side.”

Hours later, however, the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit took the extraordinary step of issuing an administrative stay to immediately block the program pending further developments. The normal appeal process takes months, and even expedited appeals usually take several weeks. Courts of appeal very rarely take action faster than that.

In this case, the suspension took effect the same day the Biden administration launched its student loan forgiveness website, potentially reducing the scope of potential damages by shutting down the program.

The fact that the Eighth Circuit granted an immediate administrative reprieve suggests a likely defeat for the administration.

Such a stay is not a decision on the merits, but this extraordinary decision suggests that a St. Louis-based court motions committee expects to rule in favor of the states, shutting down Biden’s program.

The appeals court ordered legal briefs to be filed next week on an emergency schedule.

The case is Nebraska vs. BidenNo. 22-3179 with the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit.

Breitbart News senior legal contributor Ken Klukowski is an attorney who has worked in the White House and the Justice Department.

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