President Obama would like the government to stop backing private students loans. He would like the government to provide direct financial aid to college students.
Two market forces are at at work here, one is the market for student loans. If we take the private sector out of the process, student loans may cost more due to loss of competition. The second, if the government sells directly to students, there would be no middleman which could save money. Hopefully, the middleman savings outweighs the loss of private competition.