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Sean Spicer Says White House Has '100 Percent Confidence' Betsy DeVos Will Be Education Secretary

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Wednesday morning, Sean Spicer, the White House’s press secretary, said the White House has “zero” concern and “100 percent confidence” that Betsy DeVos will be named Secretary of the Department of Education, adding, “She is an unbelievably qualified educator and advocate for students, teachers, parents.”

Spicer’s comment comes after two Republican Senators, Sens. Susan Collins (R-ME) and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), announced they would not vote for DeVos.

DeVos’s nomination has been widely contested by parents, educators and lawmakers due to her lack of teaching qualifications and knowledge regarding federal protections for students with disabilities.

“I think that the games being played with Betsy DeVos are sad,” Spicer stated at the White House’s daily briefing. “She is someone who has been a tireless advocate over the last couple of decades.”

On Tuesday the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee voted 12 to 11 to confirm Betsy DeVos, moving the vote from committee to Senate, where it will receive a full and final vote in the Senate.

To be confirmed, DeVos will need a simple majority (51 votes) of Senators to vote in her favor. Currently, the Senate is made up of 52 Republicans and 48 Democrats. If the remaining 50 Republicans vote for DeVos, and the vote is tied 50-50, Vice President Mike Pence will be required to break the tie.

Originally published: February 1, 2017
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