Betsy DeVos, the current Secretary of Education who has been repeatedly criticized for pushing policies to take rights and money away from students, has been fined $100,000 for violating a court order to stop collecting student loans from people who had attended colleges that were shut down for fraud.
After a lawsuit found that the Department of Education was still collecting on the loans, which were supposed to be canceled, Northern District of California Judge Sallie Kim was so appalled that she threatened to throw DeVos in jail.
ICYMI: A federal judge has fined Education Secretary Betsy DeVos for contempt of court for failing to stop collecting loans from former students of a now-defunct chain of for-profit colleges. The ruling orders the Department of Ed to pay a $100,000 fine.https://t.co/2PDZ3qJnZO— NPR (@NPR) October 26, 2019
“At best it is gross negligence, at worst it’s an intentional flouting of my order,” Kim said earlier this month. “I’m not sure if this is contempt or sanctions. I’m not sending anyone to jail yet, but it’s good to know I have that ability.”
Kim also held DeVos in civil contempt of court, though it does not seem like the Education Secretary has been thrown into a jail cell. It’s also disappointing to learn that the fine will be applied to the Department of Education, not DeVos herself, though such a fine wouldn’t put a dent into the billionaire’s fortune.
Secretary @BetsyDeVosED deserves to be held in contempt for violating a court order to stop collecting Corinthian students’ debt. But let’s be clear: a $100k fine paid for by @usedgov punishes taxpayers – not DeVos herself. https://t.co/1Ff3bZxCQ6— Elizabeth Warren (@SenWarren) October 25, 2019
Judge Kim found that DeVos’s department violated the court order to stop collecting on the loans taken to pay for tuition to the defunct Corinthian Colleges about 16,000 times by ignoring loan forgiveness applications and sending collection notices to former students of the scam colleges.
“There have to be consequences for violation of my order sixteen thousand times,” Kim said, though the consequences seem like they’ll weigh heavier on the U.S. public than the person responsible for the problem.
It’s also unclear whether the people who paid on those loans that were supposed to be forgiven will be compensated.
Betsy DeVos deserves to be held in contempt.— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) October 25, 2019
As California's Attorney General, I prosecuted Corinthian Colleges for targeting vulnerable students.
Americans deserve a Secretary of Education who will work for them—not predatory for-profit colleges. https://t.co/GbH4DlRl7l
If teachers have to buy their own school supplies then Betsy DeVos should have to pay her own fine. https://t.co/ZHcoSPDIrN— Mark Herring (@MarkHerringVA) October 25, 2019
Betsy DeVos was fined $100,000.— Kate Votes in EVERY Election (@VoluntaryRecall) October 25, 2019
If she paid that fine
for the next 120 years
at the end of it
she'd still be a billionaire. https://t.co/ul4MPASR40
DeVos is right at that sweet spot of generational wealth and staggering stupidity that breads a profound lack of self-awareness. She’s so on-brand for this administration.
— Nikolai (@hiroNikolai) October 25, 2019
Davos was unqualified for the job from the start. Her past association with for-profit colleges that took advantage of students was widely known. Certainly she wasn’t going to represent the needs of students over the interests of big money for-profit colleges. Drain the swanp.
— Jeff Bernstein (@bernstein59) October 25, 2019
Most of us have held her in contempt for years. Nice that the courts have caught on.
— K.C. F🦉er (@kcfowler2) October 25, 2019
Can we please make her spend just one night in jail? Or is it impossible to jail billionaires?