WASHINGTON – Senator Maggie Hassan released the following statement after the Vice President was forced to break a tie in the United States Senate and Betsy DeVos was confirmed as the Secretary of Education, 51-50:
“The Secretary of Education should have the broad backing of a range of communities, and it’s clear from the unprecedented nature of a tie-breaking Vice Presidential vote that Mrs. DeVos does not have the support she needs to serve in this position.
“As the nation saw in her confirmation hearings, Mrs. DeVos is completely unqualified and unprepared to serve as Secretary of Education and I am extremely disappointed that only two of my Republican colleagues listened to their constituents and voted against Mrs. DeVos’s nomination.
“All students, regardless of personal circumstances, have a right to a free and appropriate public education and I will do everything in my power to protect this fundamental right. I will continue to stand up for the students and families of New Hampshire and fight any effort by the new Secretary of Education to undermine our public school system or make it harder for students to thrive.”
U.S. Sen. Maggie Hassan, D-NH. took to the Senate floor with other opponents of the nomination of Betsy DeVos to talk about the amount of criticism of the Trump choice Hassan has received in her home state.
Hassan stressed DeVos’ lack of experience with public education as well as her support for diverting taxpayer dollars to private schools without accountability requirements, which would undermine efforts to ensure that every child has access to the education they need to be competitive and successful leaders in the 21st century economy.
And she zeroed in on her own family’s challenge to obtain proper education for a disabled son.
Hassan also singled out the success of Souhegan High School in New Hampshire, and its emphasis on hands-on education.
Under current rules, it requires just a simple majority for the nomination to pass, possibly leading to Vice President Pence to break a tie and shoehorn Voss into her seat.