2020 Democratic presidential primary candidates Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) were blasted by the former secretary of education under former President Ronald Reagan for their plans to erase Americans’ student loan debt, proclaiming the senators are attacking the “wrong end” of the issue.
During a Monday interview with Fox News’ “The Story with Martha MacCallum,” former Secretary of Education Bill Bennett was pressed for his thoughts on Sanders’ and Warren’s proposed plans to eliminate student loan debt for Americans.
Bennett responded by comparing Sanders’ and Warren’s plans to a game of poker, warning to “be careful of a poker game with two socialists.”
He then torched the two senators as going after the “wrong end of the problem” and pointing out that things were made “worse” by the government taking over the “student loan business.”
“This is the wrong end of the problem that they’re attacking,” said Bennett. “Because when the federal government in 2007 took over the student loan business from the private sector, it made things worse. And it has made a large part of this problem.”
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The former education secretary continued on to point out some issues with the senators’ plans, such as differentiating between cost-effective public schools and more expensive private schools, what to do about the people who have already paid off their debts, and colleges and universities could “raise” their tuitions “when they see free tuition.”
“The more the federal government makes available in terms of money with its crazy rules, the higher tuition is going to go,” added Bennett, referring to a hypothesis he wrote “years ago.”
On Monday, Sanders — the self-described democratic socialist running in the crowded 2020 Democratic presidential primary race — unveiled a proposal to cancel out the entire $1.6 trillion in student loan debt for the country currently held by 45 million Americans and provide for free college education.
The Vermont senator plans to pay for the plan by taxing Wall Street, which his campaign claims will raise over $2 trillion in a decade in the face of skepticism from tax experts, who expect lower revenues.