The authoritarian Biden presidency

Republican voters, we are told, increasingly support the idea of having an authoritarian president, by whom those telling us mean “Donald Trump.” But the same voices completely ignore how authoritarian President Joe Biden is, and how Democratic voters are fine with that.

This week, Biden announced another round of unilateral college loan bailouts without authorization from Congress. The Supreme Court struck down a bigger bailout last year, but Biden told a crowd of cheering Democrats in Madison, Wisconsin, “that didn’t stop us.”

Details of the new bailout have not been released, but the president reportedly intends to rely on different statutory authority for this executive action than he did for the last. Still, it will be unprecedented and not what Congress intended when it passed the Higher Education Act. It will also be challenged in federal court. So here we go again.

Biden’s transparent abuse of executive power for electoral gain might be less galling if he and his administration were not botching the job Congress assigned them to do on student loans. In 2020, Congress passed the bipartisan FAFSA Simplification Act, instructing the Department of Education to do what the title of the act suggests: simplify student aid applications.

The department was supposed to have a new system ready this October, but distracted by bailout efforts, it blew past that deadline, rolled out a faulty product, and then made a huge mistake processing the applications it received. Millions of students are now in limbo. “It’s hard to trust anything by now that the department is saying,” David Sheridan of Columbia University told reporters.

If Biden concentrated more on faithfully executing the laws Congress passed instead of inventing new ones that have no legislative backing, our higher education system would be in better shape.

Higher education is not the only area where Biden is abusing executive power in ways that upset the lives of ordinary people. His Environmental Protection Agency recently issued new regulations that functionally ban sales of new gas-powered cars by 2032. No one who supported the 1970 Clean Air Act intended their vote to be interpreted as enabling the abolition of gasoline-powered vehicles. But that is what Biden is using it to do. The result will be higher car prices, higher insurance prices, and millions of hours wasted waiting for unreliable electric vehicles to charge. Congress did not vote for this, but it is what Biden is delivering.

Then there is Biden’s novel definition of who is American. Congress has not passed a law granting presidents the power to release immigrants arrested for illegally entering the country. The law says the opposite: immigrants arrested for illegally crossing the southern border should be detained until they are deported, or until an immigration judge grants them asylum. Biden ignores this law, releasing millions of immigrants into the country where he does not even try to catch them, let alone deport them.

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Additionally, Biden has abused his parole authority by seeking out hundreds of thousands of immigrants nowhere near the border and flying them into the United States. There is no congressional authority for this program, yet Biden is abusing his parole power to do it anyway. The immigrants, from around the world, are supposedly here temporarily and will be returned to their home countries in two years. No one believes Biden will let that happen.

So, without legislative authorization and in defiance of courts, Biden has remade our higher education system, banned the future production of America’s favorite method of travel, and permanently altered the demographics of the nation itself. True conservatives stand against former President Donald Trump’s abuse of executive power. But no one is making it easier for Republican voters to ignore principled conservative voices than Biden and his authoritarian Democratic Party enablers.

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