February 7th, 2017

Betsy DeVos confirmed

Pence casts the tie-breaking vote:

Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer voiced his displeasure with the vote moments after she was confirmed, tweeting, “Today @VP Mike Pence did something no one else has ever done: cast the tie breaking vote on his own cabinet nominee.”

And of course, no Democrat would ever ever have done so if he or she had been in Pence’s shoes.

21 Responses to “Betsy DeVos confirmed”

  1. Paul R Says:

    Is secularism a political system, religion and mental illness, all wrapped up in one?

    Reminds me of another so called “religion”

  2. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    The hypocrisy has reached Shakesperean levels.

    Spicer should respond with; “Today, Senate Democrats did what has never been done before, attempted to dictate to a new President whom he may choose for his cabinet, forcing the VP to derail the attempt.”

  3. Griffin Says:

    One of the main reasons it hasn’t been done is because of the removal of the filibuster by Harry Reid. If that was still in effect for Cabinet posts then the Dems could have blocked her to the point that she would be pulled and then there would have been no vote for Pence to take part in. This will most likely become a common occurrence going forward when the Senate is close to 50-50.

  4. Montage Says:

    “DeVos and her husband, Dick, have donated to the campaigns of 17 senators who will consider her nomination — four of whom sit on the Senate education committee that oversees the process.”

    That is not draining the swamp. That is straining the swamp. Say what you want about the other cabinet picks but Betsy DeVos was not a particularly good choice. Though I am sure she is a nice person.

  5. Jim Doherty Says:

    Yup Griffin, but the difference will be that when republicans do this to a democrat in the future, it wil be seen by the media as rude. Because it will just be payback ya see.

    The dems keep lowering the bar, and wondering how did we all get to this state?

  6. Cornhead Says:

    Teachers and Dems went nuts over this in Omaha. A protest on Saturday; light crowd but full media coverage.

    World ends soon.

  7. parker Says:

    The “controversy” over DeVos boils down to five words: campaign contributions from the teacher unions. Oh, and somewhere in the “controversy” grizzly bears are lurking. Grizzly bears can be very frightening.

  8. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    This isn’t strictly about Betsy DeVos, it is first and foremost about obstructing Trump and secondarily about Davos being an advocate for school vouchers.

  9. Yancey Ward Says:

    My only question is this- did it make Schumer cry?

  10. Brian E Says:

    The DeVos’s contributed to Sen. Murkowski’s campaigns, so there’s that.
    The teacher’s unions were against here primarily, IMO, because she is a strong advocate for vouchers and charter schools. If charter schools and vouchers become popular, it will break the stranglehold the leftist/progressives have on the indoctrination in the public school system.
    But I’m not sure how that would work at the national level, since not every state has adopted charter schools as an option, and conservatives favor local control of schools, not more federal mandates.
    There is a legitimate objection to charter schools, and that’s special needs children. Charter schools will never have the resources to deal with these children. The other complaint is that charter schools will siphon off the better students in under-performing schools, leaving the public schools with the worst of the worst.

  11. OM Says:

    Some say progressive and liberal tears make a tasty drink. I’m on the wagon myself.

  12. junior Says:

    Spicer should respond with; “Today, Senate Democrats did what has never been done before, attempted to dictate to a new President whom he may choose for his cabinet, forcing the VP to derail the attempt.”
    ————-

    Didn’t Clinton get a couple stopped? Jocelyn Elders comes to mind. Though I suppose it’s possible that she got pulled before it came to a vote due to how unpopular the choice proved to be.

  13. neo-neocon Says:

    junior:

    Elders passed with a large margin.

    Most of the ones who ran into problems with a Senate controlled by the president’s own party (as is the case now) had hired illegal immigrants as nannies or that sort of thing. Their nominations were ordinarily pulled before a vote.

  14. GRA Says:

    On facebook a handful of my “friends” have concerns about DeVos. Here are there comments.

    ” Trump, betsy, and voldemort [Pence]”
    ” The Destroyer of Public Education”

    One compared DeVos to Professor Umbridge (not knowing much about education).

    A more fairer critique:
    “Objectively, DeVos doesn’t know the issues that Public Schools are going through. This is not a conservative/liberal thing. She couldn’t articulate her understanding on the Proficiency vs Growth debate. That’s simply bad for executing ANY policy regardless your sentiments of Public Schooling or the direction education should go.”
    ” And not knowing there are already federal laws protecting children with disabilities was frightening”

    I haven’t seen the video of which they speak so they could be bringing up decent points.

  15. expat Says:

    In addition to partially breaking the hold of the unions, more types of schools may also break the hold of some theories of the educational elites that choke public schools. It may give local school boards room to toss ideas about things like disparate impact WRT discipline. Teachers might get behind dumping ideas that have been frustrating them for years.

  16. Mrs Whatsit Says:

    “There is a legitimate objection to charter schools, and that’s special needs children. Charter schools will never have the resources to deal with these children. The other complaint is that charter schools will siphon off the better students in under-performing schools, leaving the public schools with the worst of the worst.”

    These are fair and reasonable objections. But if public schools are best equipped to deal with special needs children, then they should grasp that capacity and capitalize upon it as a particular strength. It’s needed and valuable, and there’s no reason to use that special capacity as an excuse for holding back the development of other children who don’t have the same needs. As for the fear that charter schools will siphon off the best students, that’s entirely up to the public schools. If charter schools reveal methods and techniques that work better for capable students than those used in the public schools, and the public schools choose not to adopt them for whatever reasons of contractual limitations, teacher convenience, union calcification or whatever — well then, whose fault is it, if children and parents decide to abandon ship?

    I speak as someone who comes from a family packed with capable, dedicated educators who do genuinely care about kids and who believe themselves to be committed to the needs of children above their own. All of them are beside themselves over DeVos, and I’m mystified as to why these good and caring people cannot see their own hypocrisy.

  17. huxley Says:

    Mrs. Whatsit:

    Great comment! Good to hear from you again.

  18. AesopFan Says:

    Mrs Whatsit Says:
    February 7th, 2017 at 10:21 pm
    ..
    As for the fear that charter schools will siphon off the best students, that’s entirely up to the public schools. If charter schools reveal methods and techniques that work better for capable students than those used in the public schools, and the public schools choose not to adopt them for whatever reasons of contractual limitations, teacher convenience, union calcification or whatever — well then, whose fault is it, if children and parents decide to abandon ship?

    I speak as someone who comes from a family packed with capable, dedicated educators who do genuinely care about kids and who believe themselves to be committed to the needs of children above their own. All of them are beside themselves over DeVos, andI’m mystified as to why these good and caring people cannot see their own hypocrisy.
    * * *
    An excellent comment, and a good suggestion on specialization (my grandson is autistic and doing very well in a school that has made helping special needs kids a high priority).
    You could take the final graf and apply it to almost any political issue today.

    The ability of the Democrats, in general, to hold mutually contradictory positions without recognizing the problem argues for cynical and entrenched hypocrisy, or cognitive dissonance on an massive level.

    The Left, of course, is maintaining a very consistent position: whatever advances their power is the principle they support today.

  19. Bill Says:

    “All of them are beside themselves over DeVos, and I’m mystified as to why these good and caring people cannot see their own hypocrisy.”

    I have a number of teachers in my family as well. Some work with special needs kids.

    They are beside themselves as well.

    I am kind of this-way/that-way about DeVos. I think she was put in the mix because she’s a big donor and I don’t think she’s particularly qualified, but I’d like the federal government’s sway over school districts to be diminished.

    All that being said, I would never call my family members “hypocrites”. Especially because they are actually teachers and I’m not.

    One of the biggest problems that exacerbates all our other problems – we don’t listen to each other anymore.

  20. Mrs Whatsit Says:

    Actually, I do want to step back from my use of the word “hypocrite.” I’ve been talking to some teacher friends and have learned more about DeVos than I knew when I made my previous post. She said some pretty hair-raising things during her confirmation hearings that raise very serious questions about her knowledge of education and her qualifications, completely apart from her positions on school choice. If I’d known about them, I’d have been gentler in my choice of words.

  21. Mrs Whatsit Says:

    huxley, thank you. It’s nice to have you back, too. You were missed.

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