Analysis: DeVos Confirmation Represents Victory for Reformers

Despite furious lockstep opposition from Senate Democrats and two Republicans who are among the few in their party who receive campaign contributions from teachers’ unions, Betsy DeVos was confirmed to be the next Secretary of Education. Critics’ objections to her nomination questioned her qualifications and suggested that she was hostile to public education, while others cited her family’s wealth, and sought to assassinate her character. Instances of hypocrisy and eye-widening (answer is “C,” in a 2003 writing) double standards were commonplace. In spite of this pitched partisan battle — which required Vice President Pence to break a 50-50 Senate deadlock; the first time in our nation’s history this step was needed to conclude a cabinet confirmation fight — DeVos was gracious in (narrow) victory.