DeVos clears major Senate hurdle toward becoming Education Secretary

Education Secretary-designate Betsy DeVos testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2017, at her confirmation hearing before the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

WASHINGTON (AP) – Betsy DeVos has cleared a major hurdle in the Senate to become the next education secretary, despite vigorous opposition from Democrats.

Senators voted 52-48 to cut off debate before dawn Friday morning, setting the stage for a final confirmation vote next week.

DeVos is a billionaire Republican donor and school choice activist. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York calls her “one of the worst nominees.”

Schumer says, “Ms. Devos does not deserve to be secretary of education.”

President Donald Trump’s nominee has spent more than two decades promoting charter schools across the country. Her nomination has come under fierce criticism from labor unions, who accuse her of seeking to dismantle public education. Two key Republican senators have announced their opposition to DeVos.

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