New York’s dynamic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has turned up the heat on the Supreme Court after its string of recent decisions that threaten to rock the foundations of higher education and LGBTQ rights nationwide. The progressive congresswoman asserts that the court is extending its reach into dangerous territory, bordering on authoritarianism.
In a recent CNN interview, AOC pulled no punches, stating the justices are “overreaching their authority.” Her focus was particularly sharp on the Court’s decision to squash President Joe Biden’s plan to wipe out up to $20,000 of student debt for a multitude of borrowers. As a response to this unexpected blow, she urged Biden to double down on his efforts to support the struggling loan holders as the payments are set to resume in October, with a crucial relief plan now torpedoed by a Court seemingly in cahoots with powerful vested interests.
AOC warned that if the courts continue unchecked, “we will start to see an undemocratic and, frankly, dangerous authoritarian expansion of power in the Supreme Court.” She further argued that the Supreme Court is starting to behave as if they are the legislative branch, undermining Congress’s authority.
Not one to highlight a problem without offering a solution, AOC called on Biden to freeze interest payments for a year as payments restart. This approach, she said, would give borrowers a fair shot at tackling their student loans—a challenge most borrowers claim they’re not ready to face.
“Millions of people in this country are shouldered with student loan debts below ten or twenty thousand dollars. They should not be saddled with interest during this 12-month transition period,” AOC insisted.
In response to the Supreme Court’s ruling, the Biden administration did roll out a series of student debt measures. They’ve even pledged to explore the potential of utilizing the Higher Education Act to cancel student debt—a move that advocates have long championed.
Despite these measures, AOC demanded further action from Congress to put the brakes on the Supreme Court as it grapples with its self-made legitimacy crisis and numerous corruption scandals. In a bold move, she suggested that if Chief Justice John Roberts refuses to willingly testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee, a subpoena might be in order.
“If Chief Justice Roberts refuses to voluntarily appear before Congress for an investigation, we should explore subpoenas and investigations, and we absolutely must implement stricter ethics guidelines. Impeachment should also be on the table,” she declared.
In her closing remarks, AOC emphasized the critical need for checks and balances, especially when it comes to the Supreme Court. “The Supreme Court has not been receiving the necessary oversight to maintain its own legitimacy. In the process, they’ve been undermining their own standing, which poses a grave danger to our democracy.”
With these urgent calls for action, it’s clear AOC is willing to take the fight to SCOTUS and fight for the integrity of our democratic institutions. Let’s hope the rest of Congress is ready to join her.