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Supreme Court rules on Biden’s student loan plan

Supreme Court rules on Biden’s student loan plan

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court on Friday will cap a historic term with a monumental ruling on President Joe Biden’s $400 billion student loan program that could affect tens of millions of Americans, ending the immigration dispute and ending affirmative action.

The final decisions will come a day after the court’s sharply divided decision that effectively ended affirmative action policies at American colleges, undoing decades of efforts to ensure campus grounds reflect the country’s diversity and unanimous opinion , which will oblige employers to be more accommodating to workers’ religious requests.

Overall, the Supreme Court’s final decisions are likely to reflect a rightward turn after a term in which the conservative and liberal wings appeared to find surprising common ground over issues including voting rights, immigration and a proposed 1978 law on forced resettlement to stop Indian children.

Final decisions are expected to be made minutes later at 10 a.m. EDT.

Outside the court: “My whole future is ahead of them.”

The scene outside the Supreme Court was subdued in the hour leading up to the delivery of the first advisory opinion, with few protesters gathering in the haze and damp morning.

One person appeared, mostly wrapped in a black-painted cardboard box meant to represent the Bible.

Melissa Byrne, the founder of a group called We the 45 Million, just pasted a sign on a lectern urging the court to uphold Biden’s relief efforts. Byrne, who still has student loan debt herself, said she was reasonably hopeful of a positive ruling based on the way the judges recently dismissed other claims of standing.

“My whole future is ahead of them,” she said. “You have great power.”

The two black Supreme Court justices debate affirmative action

The frequency of unanimous opinion does not mean that the term was tension-free. There have been notable instances where judges have slammed each other’s arguments, including this week’s major Affirmative Action case.

Justices Clarence Thomas, a conservative who is the court’s second black judge, and Ketanji Brown Jackson, a liberal and the court’s first black woman, brought their disagreement over race-based policies in opinions on Thursday’s affirmative-action cases to expression.

“Rather than focusing on individuals as individuals, their dissent focuses on the historical subjugation of black Americans,” Thomas wrote in unison with Jackson. “In their view, we are all irresistibly trapped in a fundamentally racist society in which the original sin of slavery and the historic oppression of black Americans continue to define our lives today.”

In a footnote, Jackson described Thomas’ writing as a “continued attack.” His opinion, she wrote,demonstrates an obsession with racial consciousness that far surpasses mine or UNC’s holistic understanding that race can be a factor influencing applicants’ unique life experiences.”

Student loans and LGBTQ cases round out the significant runtime

The final two cases, expected on Monday, will mark the conclusion of a significant term in which judges have agreed far more often than divided on ideological grounds.

The most surprising results occurred in suffrage cases where the listings were unusual. Last week the court threw out a conservative theory that would have given state legislatures extraordinary powers to set electoral rules in their states with little court oversight. That was a 6-3 vote, with Roberts opting for a majority that included two other Conservatives and the three Liberals.

Earlier this month, the court unexpectedly ruled against Alabama in a challenge to its recently redistributed congressional districts, rejecting an argument for “color-blind” redistricting. Roberts’ 5-4 decision brought together another Conservative and three Liberals.

Who Writes the Student Debt, LGBTQ Opinions?

No one knows for sure who’s writing what, but as the deadline nears, there are some clues. That’s partly because each judge generally writes a decision from each session — a period of several weeks during which cases are heard.

The Supreme Court heard arguments in the LGBTQ case on December 5, the November 28 session. The only judge who has not yet written from this session is Justice Neil Gorsuch. So there’s a good chance that Gorsuch, who is one of the most ardent supporters of religious rights on the court, will stand trial in 303 Creative v. Elenis will write the majority of the opinions.

The allocation of the student loan cases, which was heard in late February, is harder to predict because only three judges wrote at that session. Assuming the case goes to a senior Conservative, there’s a good chance it will end up with Chief Justice John Roberts or Justice Samuel Alito.

Where can I find the Supreme Court decision on student loans?

The Supreme Court justices will enter the ornate chamber and take their seats at 10 am EDT, and the Marshal will open the proceedings with the traditional shout of “Oyez!” Oyez! Oyez!” Chief Justice John Roberts will then announce which of his peers wrote the court’s opinion in the first case.

The judge who wrote the opinion – and sometimes the judges who write dissenting opinions and concurrences – then read out summaries of their views. These readings can help understand the result, but they are not streamed. When a case is closed, Roberts will announce who has the next opinion.

The opinions become public at the same time as they are announced by the judges’ bench. So the easiest way to keep track is to go to the Opinions section of the Supreme Court website.

Biden’s student loan relief plan is in jeopardy

The student loan case is about Biden’s plan to pay off the student loan debt of 26 million Americans, an idea that would cost an estimated $400 billion and has been controversial in federal courts almost from the start.

Biden’s attorneys appeared in court as outsiders in this case, facing a year-long project by the court’s conservative majority to limit federal agency powers. The government has lost similar legal battles over extending a moratorium on evictions, making vaccination or testing compulsory for large employers and curbing power plant emissions.

race:Supreme Court blocks use of affirmative action at Harvard, UNC, hurting diversity efforts

Biden announced the student loan program in August, fulfilling a campaign promise he made ahead of the 2020 election. About 26 million borrowers applied in the few weeks that applications were open, and more than 16 million were approved before two court rulings halted efforts to obtain a loan forgiveness. The government had estimated that up to 40 million people would be eligible for relief under the scheme.

However, the attempt met immediate opposition from Conservatives, who noted that Congress had failed to pass legislation specifically authorizing forgiveness. Instead, Biden relied on a law passed after the 2001 terrorist attacks that gave the Department of Education the power to “abandon or change” credit rules for Americans who were in dire straits.

Six conservative states and two individual borrowers filed lawsuits against the plan. The states, including Missouri and Nebraska, argued with a state-founded entity called MOHELA that student loan services would lose money if the debt was forgiven. Borrowers said they had no opportunity to lobby for further relief.

Wedding Websites: Widespread Impact on LGBTQ Rights

The Supreme Court is also deciding a second case involving LGBTQ rights and freedom of expression.

In a decision that could have profound implications for when companies can turn customers away, a Colorado website designer argued that a state antidiscrimination law couldn’t be used to force her to develop same-sex wedding sites. It is the latest in a series of cases in which entrepreneurs have taken on LGBTQ customers, although this case was more about freedom of expression than religion.

Lorie Smith, the owner of 303 Creative, a Denver-based website design company, said she doesn’t mind catering to LGBTQ customers — same-sex weddings only. Because Smith’s websites are custom-made, they represent both her speech and that of her clients, her attorneys argued. Smith was never approached by an LGBTQ couple looking for a marriage site. Rather, she wanted the Supreme Court to invalidate the Colorado statute before that could happen.

Critics said Smith’s argument would allow companies to circumvent anti-discrimination laws.

After a landmark 2015 victory legalizing same-sex marriage and another 2020 victory outlawing discrimination in the workplace based on sexual orientation, the outlook for LGBTQ rights at the Supreme Court has dimmed in recent years — particularly, when these rights conflict the First Amendment protection of religious liberty.

Affirmative Action: Supreme Court makes important ruling on race issue

Higher education experts were still analyzing the implications of a Thursday ruling that quashed affirmative action admissions policies used by Harvard College and the University of North Carolina to diversify their campus locations.

In one of the most watched cases of the year, the court ruled on ideological principles that the way the colleges treated race violated the 14th Amendment’s equality clause. The decision was sharply rebuffed by the court’s liberal wing, which said it set “decades of precedent and significant advances”.

Case tracking:Race, Religion and Debt. Here are the largest cases pending in the Supreme Court

Chief Justice John Roberts, long a skeptic of race-based policies, wrote that too many universities have “wrongly concluded that the touchstone of an individual’s identity is not the challenges met, the skills acquired, or the insights gained, but the Color of his skin.” “The nation’s constitutional history, he wrote, “don’t condone that election.”

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