By: Jimmy Germano
WASHINGTON — The People’s Rally for Student Debt Cancellation is being held on Tuesday, February 28th, 2023. It is being held on the same day that the Supreme Court will begin to hear oral arguments regarding two student debt forgiveness cases. Over 20 organizations will be in attendance at the rally, including the Student Debt Crisis Center (SDCC), the NAACP, and the American Federation of Teachers (AFT). Here are some things that will be important to know if you’d like to get involved on this important day:
RSVP You can RSVP for the rally. Included on the RSVP form is a question about whether you will need help with transportation for the event. You can complete the RSVP form here. There is also a live stream of the event on YouTube here.
Date & Time The rally is scheduled for Tuesday, February 28th, 2023. It will take place from 8:00 AM to 12:00 PM.
Where? The rally will take place in front of the Supreme Court.
Case Background The Supreme Court has agreed to hear two cases regarding the Biden Administration’s student loan forgiveness program. Here is the background for both:
Case One: Biden v Nebraska The United States District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri dismissed a lawsuit brought by six attorneys general of republican-led states to stop Biden’s student debt relief plan.
Then, the case went to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, where three judges issued an injunction, or blocked, the plan.
Then, the Justice Department (DOJ) filed an emergency application to lift the injunction on the forgiveness program. Last, the Supreme Court agreed on December 1st that they would take up the case, and are now set to hear oral arguments on February 28th. The Biden Administration originally launched the relief plan for student debt in August 2022, which faced legal challenges and complaints for several months before the case finally made it to the Supreme Court.
Case Two: Department of Education v Brown This case involves two student loan borrowers: Myra Brown and Alexander Taylor. They sued the Department of Education for two reasons. According to the case docket, they sued because first, they allege that the program violates APA’s notice-and comment requirements. Second, they argue that the Education Secretary does not have the authority to cancel student loans under the HEROES Act.
Next, the Department of Education moved to dismiss the case arguing that Brown and Taylor lacked the legal standing to sue, according to the Legal Information Institute at Cornell. The Department also opposed Brown and Taylor’s motion for a preliminary injunction on the loan forgiveness program. The district court ultimately sided with Brown and Taylor, declared the plan unlawful, and vacated it.
Then, on November 10, 2022, the Department of Education filed a motion for the stay of the judgment pending appeal with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. This would have temporarily suspended the district court’s ruling to vacate the program, but the Fifth Circuit Court rejected the Department’s motion.
Last, after this rejection, the Supreme Court accepted this case as the second of two to be heard on the issue of student debt forgiveness.
Can’t Make It? Check to see if your college will be hosting their own series of student debt protests or events. Also, be sure to stay in the loop with what is going on in terms of student debt by following SDCC on instagram @debtcrisisorg and on twitter @debtcrisisorg.