President Donald Trump's choice for Secretary of Education, a prolific financial backer of both Donald Trump's campaign and the Republican party, Betsy DeVos was confirmed as America's new Secretary of Education during a monumental Senate vote.

Strong Democrat opposition

The Democrats, who strongly opposed President Trump's choice on the grounds that she was woefully underqualified for the position, held the floor of the Senate vote for an incredible 24 hours straight forcing everyone to remain in the session overnight, in an attempt to block any attempt from the Republicans to fight back, and to potentially persuade Republican Senators to vote against party.

The Democrats managed to convince two Republicans to vote against Betsy DeVos, they were Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska who, along with all 48 Democrats managed to tie the vote at 50/50 each. The deciding vote then fell to Republican Vice-President Mike Pence to make the tie-breaking vote in his new role as President of the Senate.

Historic tie-breaking vote

Whilst Mike Pence's vote pushing DeVos through should be so surprise given that he is the Vice-President to Donald Trump's President, what is surprising is that of the 245 tie-breaking votes from a Vice-President in the history of the United States, this is the first one to happen on a cabinet nomination.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer had the following to say on Mike Pence's historic tie-breaker via Twitter

Who is Betsy DeVos and why the opposition?

Betsy DeVos is essentially a political lobbyist and campaign backer who has been the Chairwoman of several educational boards.

However there are many people who felt she was completely underqualified for the position, as evidence by her inability to answer simple questions on American educational policy during her fairly disastrous confirmation hearing.

Some of the highlights from the hearing were that DeVos suggested that guns should be allowed in schools to fend off bear attacks, despite the fact that not once in historic record has a bear attack harmed a student in an American school, and her refusal to commit to anti-rape programmes in college campuses.

Another criticism of Betsy is that she is, as Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers calls her, "the most ideological, anti-public education nominee." Because of this, and DeVos' strong advocation of for-profit charter schools, people are worried that public schools are going to get short thrift from the Trump administration.

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