WASHINGTON — At the weekly Republican leadership press conference today, U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt (Mo.) explained how the Democrats’ student loan and tax and spending spree will dramatically increase the cost of Obamacare. As Blunt noted, Democrats recently passed partisan legislation that spends billions to subsidize Obamacare coverage for high-income earners. On top of that, President Biden’s student loan undermines one of the biggest sources of revenue Democrats say would help pay for Obamacare.
Here are Blunt’s remarks:
“Well, our friends across the way, in the bill they passed just before we left, the reconciliation bill, decided that the government could run the health and pharmaceutical system better than the people couldn’t in a competitive market.
“Just a few years ago they decided they could do a better job with the healthcare system with the so-called Affordable Care Act, which turned out to be not very affordable at all. One of the ways to make it affordable was to withdraw student loans from the private sector with a government guarantee. And the government would collect student loans, and student loan interest would fund Obamacare.
“Well, I said at the time and others have too, this is the beginning of the end for an effective student loan program. Once you instruct the government to collect the loans, the loans won’t be collected like they were before, and so they proved it. They also proved, by the way, in the reconciliation bill that Obamacare doesn’t work any other way because one of the big hundreds of billions of dollars of spending in that bill was to subsidize people earning up to $400,000 who could not afford affordable insurance under the current Affordable Care Act system.
“It turned out that the Affordable Care Act was not very affordable at all. And it’s not affordable when the government comes in and takes out the competitive market, or decides that the competitive market is working so well, that we could handle this as well as the competitive market was, only to find that a decade later we decided that we were just going to cancel all loans because it is easier to cancel loans than to recover loans.
“And as Senator Thune said, for people who didn’t go to college because they couldn’t afford it, or people who got a certificate that was helpful for them to find a job, but no grants or loans were available for those kinds of programs, or people who went straight to work, or people who repaid their loans, these are the people who are now responsible for somewhere between 600 billions and trillions of dollars that have just been transferred from the revenue side of the government balance sheet to the debt side of the government balance sheet.
“Incredibly unfair, incredibly myopic. If you look at what just happened and you think people are going to be rushing to pay off their student loans in the future you just don’t think how people react to this kind of government irresponsibility .