WASHINGTON- Betsy DeVos has been named Education Secretary after a historic tie-breaker vote.
Vice President Mike Pence broke the tie, landing DeVos the appointment in a vote of 51-50.
DeVos has spent the majority of her career advocating for educational choice through charter schools and vouchers. However, much controversy lies around her lack of experience with public schools.
This was the first time in the nations history that the vice president was summoned to the Capitol to break a tie in a cabinet nomination.
U.S. Senator Thad Cochran said this about the decision to name DeVos as Education Secretary:
“I met with Betsy DeVos, and received her commitment to public education, addressing the urgent needs of rural schools, and programs important to Mississippi children. I believe she has the leadership skills to lead the Department of Education. I will work with her to improve our schools and to return more control over educational policies to states.”
U.S. Senator Roger Wicker issued the following statement:
“As the product of our state’s public schools and the father of three children who graduated from Tupelo’s public school system, I understand the important role education plays in our children’s futures and in our state’s economic development. I am confident Betsy DeVos will work to implement the laws that Congress passes and place decision-making back where it belongs – in the hands of family, local leaders, and states.”
The director of Empower Mississippi, Grant Callen also made remarks on DeVos’ appointment.
“I congratulate Ms. DeVos on her confirmation as the next Secretary of Education. She is an entrepreneur, an innovator, and will bring fresh ideas to the nation’s top education post. Charter schools and school choice have lifted millions of children out of poverty by giving them the life-changing opportunity of a great education, and no one knows this better than Ms. DeVos. Never before has there been an Education Secretary so committed to the notion that all parents should be able to choose where their children go to school, whether that is a public school, charter school, or private school. I thank Senators Cochran and Wicker for their confirmation vote.”