We’re just one Republican vote away from stopping Betsy DeVos from taking over the Department of Education


Today, Republican Senators Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska announced on the floor of the Senate that they would not be voting to confirm President Trump’s nominee for Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos. Assuming neither Senator changes her mind between now and the vote, which is expected to happen as early as Friday, this would result in a 50-50 vote in the Senate, which would require Vice President Mike Pence to cast the tie-breaking vote, which he would almost certainly make in support of the anti-public education crusader, who has, over the course of the past several years, donate hundreds of millions of dollars to Republican candidates that support her aggressive attacks on America’s schools. It looks, however, as though several Republican members of the Senate, like Murkowski and Collins, may be considering the possibility of jumping ship, and casting votes against DeVos, who many see as the least qualified cabinet nominee of our generation. Unfortunately, we’ve yet to get that third and final vote we need to keep DeVos from taking over the Department of Education.

While there was talk earlier in the day that Republican Senators Heller [Nevada] and Toomey [Pennsylvania] might be susceptible to pressure from their constituents, both have since come out to say that they would be voting in support of DeVos, who has absolutely no experience in school administration, even at the most basic, local level. [Toomey, through a spokesperson, said he believes DeVos is a “great pick,” and Heller issued a statement saying that he believes, “Betsy DeVos is the right choice for this position.”] Other Republicans, however, still appear to be mulling over the decision. Among those I’ve heard are still on the fence are Moore [West Virginia], Moran [Kansas], and Fischer [Nebraska], all of whom are anti-voucher Republicans from largely rural states, where charter schools aren’t as likely to target. And, I’ve heard through the grapevine that both Sullivan [Alaska] and Flake [Arizona] are still in play as well. So, if you’ve been waiting for an opportunity to activate your networks in Kansa, Nebraska, Pennsylvania, Alaska, Arizona and Nevada, now’s your chance. Reach out to whomever you might know in those states, and encourage them to call their Senators and urge them not to support DeVos. [For what it’s worth, I also wouldn’t give up on Heller and Toomey.]

So go to Facebook, and begin sorting through your contacts, looking for people in Kansas, West Virginia, Arizona, Alaska, Pennsylvania and Nebraska. And, once you’ve found them, ask them to call their Senators, and demand that DeVos not be confirmed this Friday, when the vote come up on the floor of the Senate. This, as I’m sure I don’t need to tell you, is critically important. We cannot allow DeVos to do to the rest of the country what she’s done to Michigan.

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  1. Frosted Flakes
    Posted February 2, 2017 at 7:28 am | Permalink


    1) Sequester kids, in a school, away from other kids who lack “international mindedness” and who lack educational support at home.

    2) Protest Devos.

    3) Maintain a straight face.

  2. Anonymous
    Posted February 2, 2017 at 7:41 am | Permalink

    Does your comment make sense to you, FF?

  3. Maria E. Huffman
    Posted February 2, 2017 at 9:08 am | Permalink

    Charters are not helpful in the long run…
    supporting DeVos is short term gain for some..and only for a little while.
    One day…the traditional public schools will truly decide to correct what is wrong in them, for real…whatever and how ever many are left at that point.

  4. Arika
    Posted February 2, 2017 at 9:21 am | Permalink

    VICE news is saying that Toomey and Portman have taken tens of thousands of dollars in dontations from the DeVos family. Good thing to mention when you call!

  5. M
    Posted February 2, 2017 at 9:35 am | Permalink

    I’d still encourage people in PA to call Toomey’s office and tell him that they won’t forget this. He should know that there will be a price to pay.

  6. Kat
    Posted February 2, 2017 at 11:28 am | Permalink

    Is there a graphic showing which Sanators DeVos has given money to?

  7. Donald Harrison
    Posted February 2, 2017 at 11:44 am | Permalink

    So, wouldn’t the DeVossier’s also be calling these politicians offices right now and offering them wads of cash? Isn’t BD basically on record as saying that’s how she rolls – pay to play politics?

  8. site admin
    Posted February 2, 2017 at 1:01 pm | Permalink

    Absolutely, Donald. Here, from an earlier post about DeVos, is an exact quote about buying influence.

    While DeVos has absolutely no qualifications for the job, she does have money, and she’s proven again and again that she’ll use it to get what she wants. As she said in a 1997 op-ed for the Capitol Hill newspaper Roll Call, “My family is the biggest contributor of soft money to the Republican National Committee.” She then when on to add, “I have decided to stop taking offense at the suggestion that we are buying influence. Now I simply concede the point. They are right. We do expect something in return. We expect to foster a conservative governing philosophy consisting of limited government and respect for traditional American virtues. We expect a return on our investment.” And, with this as her objective, DeVos, with her $5.1 billion net worth behind her, has wreaked havoc in Michigan, funding successful legislative efforts to efforts to, among other things, “restore religious freedom” by keeping gay couples from adopting and stop Michigan cities from passing living wage ordinances. But her real passion is in the realm of education reform, where she’s worked tirelessly to ensure that Michigan is the most anti-public education state in the union, funding campaigns to remove all caps on charter schools, while, at the same time, guaranteeing virtually no oversight.

  9. Arika
    Posted February 2, 2017 at 1:05 pm | Permalink


  10. Meta
    Posted February 2, 2017 at 3:10 pm | Permalink

    The Collins statement on why she won’t be voting for DeVos.


  11. S.T.
    Posted February 2, 2017 at 3:13 pm | Permalink

    Saw on twitter being shared among political writers:

    DeVos Update: NORTH CAROLINIANS! NC’s Thom Tillis’s office says he’s undecided & wants 2 hear from people (919) 856-4630 (202) 224-6342 RT

    It’s speculated folks like him want/need an excuse of massive response to switch sides.

  12. Posted February 2, 2017 at 11:45 pm | Permalink

    So, did we get our third Republican to defect against DeVos?

  13. EOS
    Posted February 3, 2017 at 8:39 am | Permalink

    Better keep all those Democrats in line. A few may actually think rationally.

  14. Anonymous
    Posted February 3, 2017 at 10:40 am | Permalink

    DeVos cleared another hurdle this morning at 6:30 AM, when the Senate voted to bring her confirmation to the floor. The big vote is set for Monday. So keep calling this weekend.


2 Trackbacks

  1. By Stop Pruitt on February 2, 2017 at 11:16 pm

    […] « We’re just one Republican vote away from stopping Betsy DeVos from taking over the Dep… […]

  2. […] got beat today. We just needed one vote to keep Betsy DeVos away from the Department of Education, and we couldn’t manage it. We waged one hell of an assault… occupying the offices of […]

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