It is not exactly breaking news to suggest that a number of our current president’s cabinet nominations have been controversial.
From Ben Carson running HUD despite never having worked in the industry, and no evidence he knows much of anything about anything, to Rick Perry only learning a few weeks ago that the agency he has been called on to head, the Department of Energy, was in charge of the country’s nuclear weapons stockpile and not just a cushy job to lobby for the oil industry, POTUS 45 does not seem to be making good on his promise to only put “the best and smartest people” around him.
Perhaps his two most controversial nominees have been former ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson for Secretary of State, despite questionable ties to Russia and having zero diplomatic experience, and Betsy DeVos for Secretary of Education. DeVos, like many other nominees, has zero experience in her field and has never even attended public school in her life.
DeVos’s inexperience reared its ugly head in her confirmation hearing where she, at times, appeared to have no clue what she was talking about and even suggested guns were necessary in schools to protect kids from bear attacks. Bear. Attacks……
Today, both are in the news for good and bad reasons.
For Tillerson, the news is good. Moments ago, the Senate confirmed Mr. Tillerson to be our current president’s Secretary of States by a vote of 56-43. Every Senate Republican voted in his favor, as did four Democrats: Maine Sen. Angus King (an Independent who caucuses with Senate Democrats), North Dakota Sen. Heidi Heitkamp, Virginia Sen. Mark Warner, and West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin.
The news is not so good for Ms. Devos. Two Republican Senators, Susan Collins of Maine, and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, have said they will not support her nomination, which puts her at exactly 50 votes. If this holds, she will be confirmed since VP Mike Pence will vote to break the tie.
However, if one more Republican Senator is a no vote, DeVos will have to rely on crossover votes from one or two Senate Democrats, or her nomination goes down and she has all the time for bear hunting outside of public schools she could ask for.