All but two Republican lawmakers in the U.S. Senate voted to confirm Betsy DeVos as the country’s new Secretary of the Department of Education. Vice President Mike Pence broke the 50-50 tie with a vote to confirm, which marked the first time a vice president broke a tie over a Cabinet nomination.
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) February 7, 2017
Senator Susan Collins and Senator Lisa Murkowski voted against her.
— Matt Bevin (@MattBevin) February 7, 2017
The Detroit Free Press reported that DeVos has been called “polarizing” because she supports giving lower-income parents the power to remove their children from bad government schools and place them in better ones.
Some Republicans have called for the department’s dissolution, arguing it is a federal intrusion into what should be a purely state and local institution. However, DeVos has vowed not only to enforce public laws but to support traditional public schools, saying she advocates for any kind of school that gives parents and students the choices they want.
DeVos said at her hearing she supports “any great school” — including public schools and those beyond what “the (public school) system thinks is best for kids, to what moms and dads want, expect and deserve.”
— Star Parker (@UrbanCURE) February 7, 2017
Star Parker, founder and president of the Center for Urban Renewal and Education, wrote last November that the American Federal of Teachers said President Trump’s choice showed that his administration would “focus on ‘privatizing, defunding, and destroying public education in America,'” but “the school-choice movement, where Betsy DeVos has been an activist and leader for years, is not about any of this. It is about what the teachers unions hate the most: freedom.”
Featured photo: ABC video screenshot