Democrats Try to Vilify Education Secretary Nominee Betsy DeVos

Amanda Casanova | Religion Today Contributing Writer | Thursday, January 19, 2017
Democrats Try to Vilify Education Secretary Nominee Betsy DeVos

Democrats Try to Vilify Education Secretary Nominee Betsy DeVos


President-elect Donald Trump’s pick for education secretary, Betsy DeVos, fielded tough questions from Senate Democrats this week.

In her opening statement to the Healthcare, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, DeVos said her mom was a public school teacher.

"My greatest educational influence in life was a public school teacher named Elsa Prince,” she said of her mother.

But democrats grilled her on her inexperience on public policy and her conflicts of interests on campaign donations.

In one of the most noted moments, DeVos said that schools could need guns, particularly one in Wyoming, to protect against grizzly bears.

“I will refer back to Sen. [Mike] Enzi and the school he was talking about in Wyoming. I think probably there, I would imagine that there is probably a gun in the schools to protect from potential grizzlies.”

DeVos also seemed to not have an understanding of some of the federal laws regarding schools.

She said that states should have the right to decide whether to enforce the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, but Sen. Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.) told her IDEA is a federal civil rights law.

Hassan then asked, “So were you unaware when I just asked you about the IDEA that it was a federal law?”

DeVos responded, “I may have confused it.”

According to a reporter at The Weekly Standard, however, despite the tough questions, DeVos "held her own."

 

Photo courtesy: Wikimedia Commons

Publication date: January 19, 2017

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