The Ann Arbor Public Schools board of education is calling on U.S. senators to reject Betsy DeVos as U.S. Secretary of Education, based on what one trustee described as DeVos' "open hostility to the students she is nominated to serve".
Five members of the Greenville County school board visited the Washington offices of the state's USA senators this week to urge them to vote against Betsy DeVos, the school-choice activist nominated by President Donald Trump to become the next US secretary of education.
Senator Susan Collins of ME said today on the Senate floor that she "simply can not support her nomination". Murkowski said she had "serious concerns" about DeVos, and that "thousands, truly thousands" of her constituents had called her expressing their own concerns. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) is confirmed as attorney general by the full Senate. "Her concentration on charter schools and vouchers, however, raises the question about whether or not she fully appreciates that the secretary of education's primary focus must be on helping states and communities, parents, teachers, school board members and administrations, strengthen are public schools".
A vote for final confirmation in the Senate has not yet been scheduled.
Most Democrats have already announced that they plan to oppose DeVos as well.
In their respective comments, the senators said they voted to move DeVos' nomination to the full Senate at the hearing because they believe every senator should be able to review and vote on a President's choice for cabinet positions.
"I will not, I can not vote to confirm her as our nation's next secretary of education", Collins said.
If the two women vote against DeVos, the resulting 50-50 tie could be broken by Vice President Mike Pence in his role as presiding officer of the Senate. "I will not, I can not vote, to confirm her as our nation's next secretary of education".
Gym has been one of DeVos's most vocal opponents. Further, Mrs. DeVos has showed a basic lack of understanding about federal education policy, and I am concerned about her willingness and dedication to enforcing policies that protect children with disabilities.
Sens. Lisa Murkowski (R., Alaska) and Susan Collins (R., Maine) have each benefited from contributions from the National Education Association.
Assuming all other Republicans in the Senate vote in favor of the nominee, the confirmation tally will split 50 to 50.
White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer told reporters Wednesday that he had "100 percent confidence" that DeVos will be confirmed, saying the "games" being played with her nomination are "sad". They defend her intentions and her experience as a school choice advocate and maintain that she would be a worthy advocate as secretary of education.