Friday, February 3, 2017

How Betsy DeVos Became Trump's Least Popular Cabinet Pick : NPR Ed : NPR

How Betsy DeVos Became Trump's Least Popular Cabinet Pick : NPR Ed : NPR:

How Betsy DeVos Became Trump's Least Popular Cabinet Pick



Of all President Donald Trump's Cabinet choices, only one currently seems at serious risk of being denied confirmation by the Senate.
The confirmation of Betsy DeVos as education secretary is a question mark after two Republican senators, Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, announced they plan to vote against her.
The Senate cut off debate today after a procedural vote. Assuming no other GOP defectors, and no Democrats who cross over to support her, this could place Vice President Mike Pence in the unprecedented position of casting a tiebreaker vote early next week to push the president's nominee through. Jeff Sessions' confirmation as attorney general is also being held up so he can vote for DeVos from his current post as a senator from Alabama.
DeVos is one of several billionaires named to Trump's cabinet. She's not the only one seemingly lacking in background knowledge or qualifications to run a major federal bureaucracy: Ben Carson, a neurosurgeon with no prior governmental experience, has been named to lead the housing agency. Nor, with a record that favors vouchers over public schools, is DeVos the only appointee to have seemingly opposed the agency she is now poised to run: Rick Perry famously said he wanted to abolish the Department of Energy, and Scott Pruitt sued the Environmental Protection Agency more than a dozen times.


Yet it is DeVos' nomination that has spawned massive opposition across the Internet, and from both sides of the aisle.
Heidi Hess runs campaigns for CREDO, a mobile phone company with an activist arm that has been backing progressive causes for 30 years. When President Trump's cabinet picks were announced, CREDO held a strategy meeting and chose a "top terrible" list of appointees, dubbed the #SwampySeven in reference to Trump's vows to "drain the swamp."
But, Hess says, nobody has gotten people as enraged as DeVos. Activists made 30,000 phone calls to Senate offices and smashed CREDO's record for petition signatures, she How Betsy DeVos Became Trump's Least Popular Cabinet Pick : NPR Ed : NPR:



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