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Watch: Betsy DeVos Gets Snippy but Can’t Even Answer Basic Questions Before Congress

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Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos testified before a House Appropriations subcommittee Thursday and was repeatedly unable to answer basic questions, got snippy with Democratic lawmakers, and falsely claimed research cited by top Democrats was wrong and had been “debunked.”

(The numbers behind that research came from DeVos herself, according to this piece in the Washington Post.)

In an exchange with Rep. Mark Pocan (D-WI), DeVos got heated, refuted his claims, and yet was unable to give a correct answer.

“Everything you’re citing is debunked, ridiculous, so I don’t accept the premise of your question,” DeVos, putting the word “question” in air quotes, told Pocan.

Congressman Pocan was referring to reports that show more than 40 percent of charter schools funded in full or in part by the federal government “collected the grants and then either did not open, or have opened and shut down,” as the report’s author wrote in The Washington Post.

Pocan responded by correctly saying the reports have “actually not” been debunked.

Minutes later Pocan revisited the 40 percent failure rate of charter schools, to DeVos’ anger.

“That is not true, that has been a totally debunked report,” she declared, waving her finger. “It’s nothing but propaganda by an individual who has an in for charter schools.”

“So what percent of charter schools are failing?” Pocan asked.

DeVos’ mouth opened and her jaw dropped but she did not speak for several seconds.

“Do you have an idea?” Pocan pressed.

“I don’t have a state – national,” DeVos, flustered, replied.

“You’re the Secretary of Education and you don’t have this? You ‘know’ this report’s wrong, but you don’t –” Pocan said before being cut off.

“Charter schools are chartered by states, they are not chartered by the federal government,” DeVos said, smiling, as if she won a debate. She had not. She had, however, ignored that the report shows 40.5% of charter schools received some if not all of their funding from the federal government.

“You know that number’s not right but you don’t have a correct number,” Pocan responded.

“What I know is parents and families are choosing to send their children to charter schools,” said DeVos.

“So you don’t know the answer?” Pocan again asked.

“Parents and children are going to charter schools by choice,” DeVos repeated, showing she has little interest in anything but continuing to fund charter schools, regardless of the cost to taxpayers or the cost to students who don’t receive a good education, and the cost to public school students who lose funding every day a student attends a charter school instead of a public school.

That, too, is somewhat false. After three years of an anti-public schools Secretary of Education, parents are learning that charter schools “make up an outsized share of the number of public schools persistently graduating less than half of their students.”

Americans are “turning against” charter schools reveals another Washington Post report.

Watch this exchange between Devos and Pocan:

 

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Trump Says He Will Make SCOTUS Nomination Next Week – Appears He Will Use Seat to Strengthen Where He Is Weak in Polls

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President Donald Trump says he will announce his nominee to replace Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg “next week.”

He made clear his primary deciding factors will be to help him in the polls.

Trump told reporters Saturday afternoon “most likely” he will choose a woman.

CNN reports he is leaning towards choosing a woman mostly because he is doing poorly in the polls with women.

Trump spoke about two women judges. He talked about Barbara Lagoa, noting she is Hispanic and from Florida. He is struggling in the polls with Hispanics and in Florida.

Reporters also asked about Amy Coney Barrett, a far right wing anti-choice, anti-LGBTQ extremist. Trump spoke positively about her as well. Reports say she is the current frontrunner.

This is a breaking news and developing story. Details may change. This story will be updated, and NCRM will likely publish follow-up stories on this news. Stay tuned and refresh for updates.

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Trump: Republicans Must Fill Supreme Court Seat ‘Without Delay’

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President Donald Trump Saturday morning, barely 12 hours after U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg passed away, announced his intention to fill her seat “without delay.”

The president said the Republican Party has been handed the “position of power and importance” to make decisions for those who elected them.

“We have this obligation,” he insisted, ignoring his obligation to balance decision-making by remembering he is president of the entire country, not just the red states.

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Trump Releases Statement on Passing of ‘Titan’ Ruth Bader Ginsburg

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President Donald Trump has issued a formal statement on the passing of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

He called her a “titan of the law,” and praised her for her “brilliant mind” and for her “powerful dissents.” Trump also said her Supreme Court decisions “have inspired all Americans.”

Earlier, before boarding Air Force One, Trump claimed he had not known she had passed away, and said, “She just died? I didn’t know that.”

“She led an amazing life, what else can you say? Whether you agree or not … she led an amazing life.”

Here’s the President’s statement:

 

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