An advocacy group has released internal documents that shed light on the concerns of staffers at a loan company allegedly being misused by Republican attorneys general in their attack on the president’s proposal.
The U.S. Supreme Court approaches a verdict on President Joe Biden’s student debt relief plan
The Student Borrower Protection Center (SBPC) obtained internal records from the Missouri Higher Education Loan Authority (MOHELA), a private state-chartered lender, under Missouri’s Sunshine Law. These documents reveal that MOHELA employees were confused by a lawsuit filed by then-state Attorney General Eric Schmitt. Schmitt argued that Biden’s relief plan could harm the company, but an independent report showed that not only would MOHELA not be harmed, it would actually make more money.
This questionable claim serves as the basis for MOHELA’s involvement in the lawsuit Biden v. Nebraska. Several states, including Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, and South Carolina, are suing the Biden administration, claiming that the debt forgiveness plan violates the U.S. Constitution’s separation of powers and the Administrative Procedure Act. Notably, MOHELA is not a plaintiff in the case, a fact that critics, including progressive U.S. Representative Cori Bush (D-Mo.), have highlighted as they call for the dismissal of the suit.
The Supreme Court is expected to rule on this case, along with another student debt relief case
Ella Azoulay, SBPC’s research and policy analyst, stated that the emails obtained from MOHELA confirm that Missouri’s lawsuit is a “partisan hack job” designed to garner attention for the right-wing attorney general. Azoulay further emphasized that MOHELA’s own staff members believe the case lacks standing and should be discarded. The internal emails also reveal the employees’ confusion about their involvement in the lawsuit, with one asking if MOHELA is “the bad guys” in the legal battle.
During oral arguments in February, the Supreme Court’s conservative majority signaled its inclination to support the Republicans’ challenge to the debt cancellation program and strike it down.