Arne Duncan: No, we don’t actually know the cost of our student loan program

posted at 5:01 pm on June 11, 2014 by Erika Johnsen

An unsurprising yet groan-inducing addendum to the empty gesture executive order President Obama so magnanimously introduced this week to allow millions of student-loan borrowers to cap their monthly payments at 10 percent of their current income and then be fully forgiven after 20 years — a “favor” to borrowers to lessen their burdens that will, in the long run, only serve to inflate future tuition prices and borrowing costs ever further. I missed this on Monday, but the WFB didn’t:

SECRETARY OF EDUCATION ARNE DUNCAN: We actually don’t know the cost yet. Obviously we have to go through this regulatory process, so we’ll figure that out the back end. But we think this is something that will be fantastic for the economy. … We’ll work through the details as we go through the regulatory process.

Translation: Don’t know, don’t really care.

Anyhow, speaking of government-issued ostensible favors to student borrowers that actually end up worsening their problems, Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s even larger and similarly perverse-incentivizing student-loan proposal was shot down in the Senate this morning, at least for now:

The Senate on Wednesday voted not to move forward on a bill from Sen. Elizabeth Warren that would have allowed an estimated 25 million people with older student loans to refinance that debt at current, lower interest rates.

Democrats are vowing to keep the issue alive and bring it back for another airing this year. …

“We’re not giving up,” Warren said at a press conference shortly after the vote, slamming Republicans for blocking the bill. …

Warren’s bill would pay for refinancing students’ loans by raising taxes on the wealthy, a guaranteed non-starter for Republicans in the Senate and the House. Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) — who Tuesday said Democrats will bring it back to the floor in the future if it fails to pass Congress — has in the past said that paying for a student loan bill using the so-called “Buffet rule” is a surefire way to politicize it.


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Why should we keep track of the money? It’s not ours!

LeftCoastRight on June 11, 2014 at 5:08 PM

And now we see EXACTLY why the student loan program was privitized. This mess has tentacles that will require hundreds of billions in tax payer money.

Funding the Obama/Democratic political objectives has reached the point where they REFUSE to even ESTIMATE the cost!!

Freddy on June 11, 2014 at 5:11 PM

lets just set the tax rate for ‘rich’ at 100% and be done with it. Then we won’t have to keep getting new programs paid for by ‘raising taxes on the rich.’

Rich of course is anyone making over minimum wage.

txdoc on June 11, 2014 at 5:11 PM

Okay, so the government took over the student loan industry in an effort to find the funds to pay for Obamacare.

If students are paying lower interest rates before being forgiven altogether of any remaining debt, what does that do for the ACA budget numbers?

The Schaef on June 11, 2014 at 5:11 PM

Abolish the US Department of Education…

d1carter on June 11, 2014 at 5:13 PM

“We’re not giving up,” Warren said at a press conference shortly after the vote, slamming Republicans for blocking the bill. …

She did not need a single Republican to vote for it, not one.

Johnnyreb on June 11, 2014 at 5:14 PM

Obviously we have to go through this regulatory process, so we’ll figure that out in the back end.

The back end, where Obama administration officials do all of their thinking.

fogw on June 11, 2014 at 5:15 PM

Uh ohhhh, shades of obummer/Hillary/Holder/Corzine/Sebilius….ad nauseum. This “Ah dunno” phrase really gets around.

jake49 on June 11, 2014 at 5:16 PM

by Erika Johnsen

What she still doing here? Just kidding, I wish you would stay over Rothman.

lowandslow on June 11, 2014 at 5:16 PM

we’ll figure that out the back end

“We have to pass it to know what’s in it!

Worked out great the last time we did that, didn’t it?”

AZCoyote on June 11, 2014 at 5:17 PM

They are waiting for it to be published in the newspaper.

Sven on June 11, 2014 at 5:18 PM

A handful of the trained monkey media looked up with a sort of whiplash when he said they don’t know the cost. But they quickly put their heads back down and continued their stenography with the rest. No news writing there, they are just taking dictation.

Brat on June 11, 2014 at 5:21 PM

Most responsible and accountable administration evah! tells us that they have no friggin’ clue how many billions, or even trillions, of our tax dollars their new student loan forgiveness order will cost us, but . . . . er . . . . shut up raaaaaacists!

AZCoyote on June 11, 2014 at 5:21 PM

My son is 21 and didn’t go to college. Why should he be taxed to subsidize those that did?

Charlemagne on June 11, 2014 at 5:23 PM

Who cares what it costs? Bo has a fed reserve that will print the money and we all know that is like free money.

David in ATL on June 11, 2014 at 5:23 PM

She did not need a single Republican to vote for it, not one.

Johnnyreb on June 11, 2014 at 5:14 PM

Of course NOBODY in the press will call her out on it. Maybe they should be asking her why she couldn’t get enough support from members of her own party? Nah – easier to just blame those evil Republicans.

Hill60 on June 11, 2014 at 5:24 PM

where does that leave people who are still paying for student loans sold to quasi govt agencies like Sallie Mae, I never hear relief from that govt sponsored mafia front.

ninjacoastie on June 11, 2014 at 5:30 PM

Wow, just like what the CBO said about ObamaCare!!!!

Democrat vote buying is getting mighty expensive.

Wait…Maybe it isn’t, since no one seems to know just how much they’re spending.

Hell with it!!!!!

FORWARD!!!!!!

BigWyo on June 11, 2014 at 5:31 PM

Money, schmuny – hey, as pointed out earlier, it’s their money. What the heck. The cookie jar is open.

Charlemagne on June 11, 2014 at 5:23 PM

Because with everything that is “progressive”, it is about the clueful paying for the clueless. Morons go to school to party, run up massive debt, and are shocked, SHOCKED I TELL YOU!, that they can’t pay it back. Dude! It just gets “progressively” worse.

Chuck Ef on June 11, 2014 at 5:31 PM

If Duncan ran a private enterprise he would be in jail and have thousands of civil law suits pending.

No consequences, no performance.

jukin3 on June 11, 2014 at 5:35 PM

Morons go to school to party, run up massive debt, and are shocked, SHOCKED I TELL YOU!, that they can’t pay it back. Dude! It just gets “progressively” worse.

Chuck Ef on June 11, 2014 at 5:31 PM

Well, a lot of people do pay them back, but it’s kinda hard when you spend $150K on a degree in Playground Management.

I hear talk of making student loans subject to bankruptcy laws…which would have been great before the Feds took it all over…

Now we just get screwed either way….

Iowahawk has a great idea…make the colleges co-sign on the loans.

BigWyo on June 11, 2014 at 5:38 PM

From each according to any money they might have.
To each according to how lazy they are.

jukin3 on June 11, 2014 at 5:40 PM

Cost, shmost. We got the pow-wa!

J.B. Say on June 11, 2014 at 5:40 PM

With legislation passed by Congress and signed by the President in 2010 and regulations adopted by the Administration in 2012, most students taking out loans today can already cap their loan payments at 10 percent of their incomes. . . .

This executive action is expected to help up to 5 million borrowers who may be struggling with student loans today.

So congress passes a law that does not include 5 million students who had previously borrowed federally-insured loans. Congress obviously could have written the student loan law to operate retroactively, and thereby include those 5 million students, but it chose not to. Now Obama essentially re-writes the law to be more to his liking, and includes the 5 million previous borrowers — and says damn the cost.

How is this even constitutional? The constitution gives the power of the purse to congress, not to the executive. Obama can’t unilaterally decide he’s going to spend billions of dollars that congress hasn’t authorized, just because he feels like it.

Grow some stones, congress, and put a stop to Obama’s lawlessness before it’s too late!

AZCoyote on June 11, 2014 at 6:13 PM

Well, that’s close enough for government purposes.

Another Drew on June 11, 2014 at 6:16 PM

by raising taxes on the wealthy

How many times does Fauxahauntus think she can go to that well before it dries up?

GarandFan on June 11, 2014 at 6:22 PM

‘We don’t know the numbers, but it’s going to be great for the economy.’

Even my five-year-old knows not to try getting away with a stupid statement like that.

‘Daddy, I don’t know how much this candy bar costs, but I know it will be great for your wallet!’

:facepalm:

xNavigator on June 11, 2014 at 6:48 PM

Obama so magnanimously introduced this week to allow millions of student-loan borrowers to cap their monthly payments at 10 percent of their current income and then be fully forgiven after 20 years

…these people couldn’t run a ‘Lemonade Stand’!

KOOLAID2 on June 11, 2014 at 7:13 PM

Don’t know, don’t really care.

Good summation of current fiscal policy for the entire Democratic Party and far too many incumbent Republicans.

The follow-up sentence is: “But we should raise taxes on corporations and rich people to make sure we can cover the costs.”

pilsener on June 11, 2014 at 7:46 PM

How many times does Fauxahauntus think she can go to that well before it dries up?

GarandFan on June 11, 2014 at 6:22 PM

Forever, because the taxed are always the minority, and the recipients of this stolen largess are legion.

Didn’t this lowlife cheat and swindle her way into a university gig? So basically she is saying – lets steal money from the Producers, launder the loot through students straight into the coffers of academia which pays her salary and benefits.

In the end, the Producers are deprived of capital to expand and hire the chumps who squandered four to five otherwise productive years learning the three basic concepts learned at the university level: binge drinking, fornication and protesting. For this, they pick up a score of years of indebtedness to the like of Warren.

The unemployable products of her education system can’t keep the banksters happy, so lets steal again from the Producers.

This is just evil.

Reuben Hick on June 12, 2014 at 7:02 AM

SECRETARY OF EDUCATION ARNE DUNCAN: We actually don’t know the cost yet. Obviously we have to go through this regulatory process, so we’ll figure that out the back end.

Duncan to taxpayers: When we figure it out, Lois Lerner will send you the bill.

Steve Z on June 12, 2014 at 10:40 AM

The Senate on Wednesday voted not to move forward on a bill from Sen. Elizabeth Warren that would have allowed an estimated 25 million people with older student loans to refinance that debt at current, lower interest rates.

How about passing a bill that would allow private banks to make student loans, like they could before Obamacare? If the banks charge less interest than Sallie Mae, the students pay less interest, and the banks make more money. A win-win for everyone.

Steve Z on June 12, 2014 at 10:45 AM

Great. Just what the country needs. More lawyers and European History majors.

If you subsidize it, you’ll get it. Why not give student loans ONLY to engineering and pre-med majors?

NoPain on June 12, 2014 at 2:22 PM