With the stroke of a pen, President Joe Biden established a new plan that strongly resembles legislation. However, no one in the legislative branch of government agreed to it or had anything to do with its creation.
The president’s student loan forgiveness plan is just the latest exercise in what amounts to government-by-fiat in the United States.
Cut Out of Whole ClothThe debt forgiveness plan was cut out of the whole cloth by the president’s team and assumed the president’s authority from two separate laws.
The Biden administration has asserted that the pandemic emergency use laws give the president the authority to create the law solely by executive order since the state of emergency declaration in the country has yet to be lifted.
Constitutional Lawmaking 101This isn't the process our representative government is meant to follow, as expressed in the Constitution. As a quick reminder, the creation of laws in this country must begin in the legislative branch, which includes two legislative bodies or chambers: the Senate and the House of Representatives.
Members of the House of Representatives and the Senate can propose and write legislation. After various rounds of deliberation and tweaking, the House or Senate versions of the legislation are voted on for either passage or denial. But the same bill must pass by majority vote in both the House and the Senate before being passed to the president.
Once a bill is passed to the president, it will either be signed into law or vetoed by the president.
If it’s vetoed, both houses of Congress can vote to override the president’s veto with a two-thirds majority vote in favor of the legislation and against the president’s veto within 10 days of the veto.
Political Expediency Overrules the LawBut our leaders ignore the Constitution in favor of political expediency.
“People think that the President of the United States has the power for debt forgiveness. He does not. He can postpone, he can delay, but he does not have that power,” Pelosi said at a press conference.
But that, of course, was last year.
The Death of Our Representative Democracy?But what about our elected leaders’ oath to uphold the Constitution? Where's their defense of our representative form of government that’s supposed to be a government that’s by the people and for the people?
The short answer is that it’s gone.
The list of those wielding power is short. The president of the United States, the speaker of the house, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, the chief medical adviser to the president, the director of the CDC, and a few others in positions of authority have been the decision-makers for the rest of us.
Today, the Biden administration is picking winners and losers in the United States and making the losers pay for the winners’ loans.
Yes, there will be legal challenges to this new plan—but will it matter?
Nearly half the country is apparently uninformed about what a massive power grab this is or doesn’t care about the freedoms and responsibilities that come only with our republican form of government.