by Scott Creighton
The healthcare “Reform’ bill is getting worse by the day now.
We have already covered the little gem of truth that says that children really AREN’T protected from being denied healthcare coverage due to pre-existing conditions, right? We talked about that.
And we talked about President Obama’s media blackout of his signing into law the Stupak compromise that severely restricts poor/working women access to abortions. We covered that, right?
Well, I hate to be a wet blanket in this national Obamalovefest, but you know that little Reconciliation Bill clause that puts more money into the Pell Grant Program and ensures that awards won’t be massively reduced this year? Well, that appears to be gone.
It appeared initially that deleting the provisions, dealing with Pell grants for low-income students, should not cause major problems for Democrats hoping to rush the bill to Obama and avoid prolonging what has been a politically painful ordeal for the party. MSNBC
At a time when college tuition is on the rise all the country and students are taking to the streets en mass to protest the rate hikes, this provision had promised to be a bit of really good news for students from poor and middle class families all across the country. The Pell Grant program is in serious trouble with not enough funding to keep loaning money out to kids at the same levels they have been. This provision would have meant that as rates for tuition go up, the Pell Grant awards to students who desperately need the money would have at least remained the same. Now, once this provision is struck from the Reconciliation Bill, students can expect major reductions in their Pell Grant awards and therefore they will either not be able to keep up with the cost of tuition and have to drop out OR they will have to make up the difference by BORROWING even MORE money from the banks.
The bill would establish an automatic increase in Pell grant awards, tied to inflation, for students from low-income families. The disputed provision would prevent any reductions in the maximum award. New York Times
The Democrats, desperate to keep the HAPPY HAPPY JOY JOY moment going, desperate to keep the momentum alive (or perhaps DUE TO THEIR MOMENTUM), have found a way to spin this new story so that it doesn’t do them too much damage… “No Big Deal”.
Democrats described the situation as a minor glitch… MSNBC
Senate Finance Chairman Max Baucus, D-Montana, said one or two potential problems were identified, but he said they were minor. CNN
Tens of thousands of college kids will be effected by this and many will lose their shot at a college degree. Still more will be forced to take out even more money from the big bank loan programs and thus when they finish school, in this economy, be even deeper in debt, affecting their lives and their standards of living for years to come.
And that, to the “progressive” Dems in congress is a “minor problem“? Expect to see that word used a lot today as Democrats parrot their Party talking points.
This bill just gets better by the hour, huh? But don’t expect the “progressives” and the Dems to spend too much time worrying about it; they’re too busy patting themselves on the back for all the “good” this bill does. Why let a few little corporatist hiccups spoil the Party, right?
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