Ben Nelson comes out against reconciliation bill

Ben Nelson released a statement this afternoon declaring that he would vote against the reconciliation bill that the House passed yesterday because of the student loan reforms. As he says:

“Perhaps most troubling is adding unrelated student loan reforms that have never been debated in the Senate and would result in a government takeover of student lending.”

Get that? Ending an $80 billion subsidy to private lenders to do what the government already does is “a government takeover” in his mind.

As John Cole said on twitter Saturday,

“Only a full fledged wingnut like @kathrynlopez would call stopping a multibillion dollar corporate handout “a takeover.”

Full-fledged wingnuts and Ben Nelson.

Nelson argues that this would endanger 30,000 jobs, which he says is foolish in this economy. Ben Nelson thinks it’s worth $80 billion to protect 30,000 jobs, yet continues to vote against the much-less-expensive jobs bills that have come up in the Senate because they add to the deficit.

And quite significantly, the reconciliation bill eliminates the “Cornhusker Kickback,” which Nelson will now cast another vote to preserve.

2 Responses to Ben Nelson comes out against reconciliation bill

  1. Matthew says:

    As hard as it is to believe, I don’t really think this is about the Cornhusker kickback. He got so much flak for that, even nationally, that he must have been ready to throw it to the side. I think this is mostly a political vote as he heads into re-election down big. Plus he knows that his vote won’t be the deciding one this time. He can vote no and then claim both responsibility for the benefits of the bill yet avoid some of the negativity that comes for voting for a Democratic reform while being a senator from Nebraska.

    neal replied:

    Oh I don’t think it’s about the Kickback at all — just that this means he’ll end up voting to protect it and against the “Cornhusker Kickoff” that he claims was part of the plan all along. It’s an unfortunate situation for him to be in, but also kind of strange — Nelnet has been saying for months now that they’re not too worried about the bill, as they’ve adjusted their business model.

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