Fox's Carlson advances falsehood that students will “only be able to get” loans “through the government”

Fox & Friends host Gretchen Carlson falsely claimed that “moving forward,” students will “only be able to get” a loan “through the government.” In fact, the recently-passed student loan reform does not eliminate private lending; it only requires that students receiving federal loans acquire them directly from the government.

Carlson advanced falsehood that students can now only get loans “through the government”

From the April 1 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends:

ERIC BOLLING: And Steve, shouldn't they be saying, listen, it's all about personal responsibility. Go out and do what you have to do, work, earn. Instead they're saying don't wor-they're almost like encouraging you to start this whole I don't know, 'I'm going to live off the nanny state' thing. Universities should be encouraging them to work hard and not have to go on food stamps or SNAP.

GRETCHEN CARLSON: That's an interesting point. 20,000 people sign up each day across our country for this SNAP program, what we grew up knowing as food stamps. Full time students are eligible who work at least 20 hours a week. Now keep in mind, they can apply for food stamps and still get Pell grants, government loans, other kinds of student loans, but moving forward, of course, you'll only be able to get your loan through the government. But these kids are going to be able to get food stamps and their college loans.

Law eliminates private banks' role as middlemen in lending federal loans

Student loan reform law eliminates private institutions' ability to distribute federal loans. The Student Aid and Fiscal Responsibility Act, or SAFRA, was included in the health care reconciliation package that President Obama signed into law March 30. The bill eliminates the Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program, which allowed banks and other lending institutions to issue student loans that are insured by the federal government.

Associated Press: “Private lenders still will make student loans that are not backed by the government.” According to the Associated Press, “The law strips banks of their role as middlemen in federal student loans and puts the government in charge. The president said that change would save more than $60 billion over the next 10 years, which in turn would be used to boost Pell Grants for students and reinvest in community colleges...Private lenders still will make student loans that are not backed by the government, and they still will have contracts to service some federal loans. But the change reflected in the new law represents a significant loss in what has been a $70 billion business for the banking industry.”

Fox News has pushed falsehood that the government is “taking over” the student loan business

Beck: “They're taking education too. You're not going to be able to get any private dollars for education.” On the March 18 edition of his Fox News show, Glenn Beck said “I mean, it's not just health care. It's - I mean, they are taking education, too. You are not going to be able to get any private dollars for education...I mean that's just, that is so much control.” Later in the show, he asked Rep. Steve King (R-IA), “Is there any sense of trepidation at all from people who are thinking about voting for this? Are they -- are they worried at all that this might just tear the country apart, taking over health care -- one-sixth of the economy -- and education?” [Glenn Beck, 03/18/10]

MacCallum: “The student loan business would be taken over by the government as well.” On the March 19 edition of Fox News' America's Newsroom, co-host Martha MacCallum said, “There's another thing that I wanted to bring up with you that I think isn't getting a lot of attention. And it's this whole issue of student loans and that the student loan business would be taken over by the government as well.” Her guest, Rep. Paul Broun (R-GA) said, “well, it's just another one of the government takeovers of a lot of our financial sectors. The federal government is going to be the loan agency of all students.” [America's Newsroom, 03/19/2010]