Seth Meyers mocked Betsy DeVos’ reaction to her confirmation as the White House education secretary on the Tuesday, February 7, episode of Late Night, just hours after news broke of DeVos’ triumph.
“Vice president Mike Pence today cast the tie-breaking vote to confirm controversial education secretary Betsy DeVos, and if you don’t know what that means, you’re probably Betsy DeVos,” Meyers, 43, joked, then pretending to be DeVos herself, imagining how she might have reacted to the news. “‘What’s that? Huh? I got confirmed? Well, that’s terrible news. Oh! It’s good news.’”
DeVos’ confirmation comes after serious criticism from educators, charter school advocates, parent groups, teachers’ unions and Democrats in Congress who believe her to be unqualified and unfit to take on the position. Prior to her bid for the secretary chair, the 59-year-old billionaire heiress was best known for her family’s donations to campaigns and super PACs and for serving on the board of several education-related organizations.
The Senate was split 50-50 on Tuesday, leading Pence, 57, to cast a historic tie-breaking vote. Senate Democrats held a marathon night of debates on Monday into Tuesday morning to try to sway one more Senate Republican to vote against DeVos’ confirmation. (Republican Sens. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Susan Collins of Maine had crossed party lines to vote against DeVos.)
“I appreciate the Senate’s diligence & am honored to serve as @usedgov Secretary,” DeVos tweeted on Tuesday. “Let’s improve options & outcomes for all US students.”
On January 17, DeVos made headlines after she bungled her Senate nomination hearing when she admitted to knowing very little about the education system, including the difference between “growth” and “aptitude.” At one point, she also defended the right of a school in Wyoming to have guns on campus, just in case of “potential grizzlies.”
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