The Senate was split right down the middle on whether or not President Trump’s pick for the next education secretary, Betsy DeVos, would be realized. Vice President Pence made a historic tie-breaking vote. With that, the vote count was 51-50, and DeVos was confirmed.
Fox News adds, “Pence’s vote marked the first time in American history a vice president has broken a tie on a Cabinet nominee’s Senate confirmation – and the first tie-breaking vote by a VP since 2008. Pence was compelled to cast the vote after two Republican senators – Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska – joined all 48 Senate Democrats in opposing DeVos.
“The Senate being equally divided, the vice president votes in the affirmative and the nomination is confirmed,” Pence said, stepping into his role as president of the Senate in a brief appearance on Capitol Hill.”
Republicans showed their support for DeVos, defending that she’s very capable for this important position. Fox News provided quotes from the confirmation:
“She’s led the most effective school reform movement of the last 30 years,” Senate education committee Chairman Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., said moments earlier on the floor, shoring up DeVos’ Republican support.
“[Democrats are] trying to humiliate and embarrass some of these nominees,” White House Counselor Kellyanne Conway told Fox News earlier Tuesday, saying DeVos is committed to education.
“It seems this gridlock and opposition has far less to do with the nominees actually before us than the man who nominated them,” said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky. “Enough is enough.”