Betsy DeVos was nominated by President Trump in order to serve as the Secretary of Education for the United States of America. After a contentious and difficult confirmation hearing, of which there have since been many, Betsy DeVos was confirmed and able to take her position as the head of the Department of Education. After being nominated for the position, Betsy DeVos has been under constant fire from the media and members of both the right and left sides of the political aisle. The reason? Betsy DeVos is a reformer and her goal is to enact change on American politics and she is going to start by championing school choice.
School choice is a topic that likely wouldn’t even be talked about had it not been for the hard work that Betsy DeVos has been doing over the past thirty or so years. School choice is, in essence, a concept that pushes parents to enroll their children into the educational facilities that suit them the most. Rather than simply pushing child after child into the public school system, Betsy DeVos believes that the government should help fund alternative educational paths. Facilities like charter schools and religious schools should receive more support under a school choice friendly government. Why does Betsy DeVos believe in this concept so much?
Well, the idea of educational choice arose from Milton Friedman’s paper titled, ‘The Role Of Government In Education’. 50 years after Friedman wrote that paper, the first private-school voucher facility opened its doors in Milwaukee, WI. Since then, 17 states have adopted privately funded, publicly available school choice facilities. More than 250,000 students have since enrolled into this special educational choice programs. Betsy DeVos has seen the effect and impact that educational choice can have on children as Michigan is one of the most prominent states in support of the concept.
Despite the clear success and impact that school choice is having on children, Betsy DeVos knows that she has an uphill battle to fight back in Washington D.C. DeVos has to square off against an increasingly partisan D.C. while also selling the concept to people all over America. Fortunately, conservatives are coalescing around this concept of education reform and that means that there is more momentum than ever. With President Trump and the Republican establishment at her back, Betsy DeVos should be able to push school choice further than it has ever been before.
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End Citizens United is a political caucus formed to counter the Supreme Court Decision that deregulated spending limits by political candidates and groups. The core agenda of the group is to get rid of big spending in politics. They intend to elect reform champions in campaign finance. They would like such reformists to join Congress and pursue the agenda from there.
Background and Leadership
End Citizens United was formed in 2015 following agitation by those aggrieved by the Supreme Court decision in the Citizens United versus Federal Election Commission. There is a board that oversees the activities of the group. Tiffany Muller, the Executive Director and President of the group is looking up. She has given direction regarding the group’s activities including fundraising strategies. The group is headquartered in Washington DC.
One of the strategies that End Citizens United is using is to endorse candidates for the various political positions. They are particularly interested in positions in the Congress and the Senate because these institutions are the ones charged with legislation and processing of bills that affect the concerns of the citizens. Some of the people that the group has endorsed include Hillary Clinton, Beto O’Rourke, Elizabeth Warren, Zephyr Teachout, John Osoff, Priori Jon Tester and Sheldon Whitehouse.
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The political pressure group has achieved significant progress on the fundraising front. The group indicated that it succeeded to raise over $ 7 million in 2017 and intends to go several notches higher in the 2018 election cycle. In particular, they have targeted raising $35 million.
The Concerns Raised By the End Citizens United Political Pressure Group
The Group has altered the political landscape and how the elections in America will be conducted. Indeed, the Supreme Court revisited the legal argument that corporations are nothing but people. The move effectively opened the Pandora’s Box and allowed billionaires and groups with special interests to spend unlimited and undisclosed sums on the candidates that they prefer. Such a move is perceived to be counteractive and infringes on the rights of citizens to make their democratic choices without undue influence.
The group is funded by the grassroots people. All efforts are directed towards achieving campaign finance reforms and pushing the legislators to take appropriate action. According to actionnetwork.org End Citizens United, apart from endorsing campaign reform champions for the various political seats, it seeks to actively elect candidates that are pro-reform, sensitizing the public on the issue of unlimited spending in campaigns and starting a conversation that will heal the country of the rot occurring in the electoral system. It seeks to use grassroots’ membership to show political power on the concerns touching on big money in politics.
The group has been filing their petitions with the Federal Elections Commission ever since it was formed. It had its latest filing done on Dec 20th, 2017. The group has a team of experienced democratic activists to assist in broadcasting the message against uncontrolled spending in political campaigns.
There is a rising tide of change coming through Washington D.C. and Betsy DeVos , the newly minted Secretary of Education, could be one of the defining moments of the shift. Betsy DeVos was nominated by President Donald Trump to the role of Secretary of Education, thus fulfilling his promise to drain the swamp and shift away from the concept of ‘business as usual‘. Betsy DeVos came to Washington D.C. with a relatively low national profile but she has worked quick and hard in order to establish herself in our nation’s capital. The biggest question most people will be asking themselves is this: What will Betsy DeVos stand for during her time as the Sec. of Education?
Taking over the Department of Education as an outsider can probably be considered a pretty difficult task. Fortunately, according to most reports, Betsy DeVos has always been a political bulldog and a fighter. As the former chairwoman of the Michigan Republican Party, Betsy DeVos has experience toeing the party line while also pushing the things she believes into the forefront of the conversation. Donald Trump famously requested loyalty from James Comey at the FBI, something that he does with all of his hires dating back to his work in real estate, and that’s likely what he’s going to get from Mrs. DeVos — to a point. Figures worried that Betsy DeVos will become a simple mouthpiece for the President need not have that concern, as you will soon see.
Betsy DeVos is probably one of the single most important individuals in the underrated fight for school choice across the nation. School choice is a concept that was made famous by Milton Friedman but brought to the masses by Betsy DeVos through her work with several foundations, including the American Federation for Children. School choice seeks to take away government intervention in the schooling system so as to give parents more control over the future of their children’s educational options. Betsy DeVos cites a visit to the Potter’s Christian House as an instigator to her lifelong pursuit and passion for school choice. Thanks to her work, DeVos has brought school choice to more than 17 states that are currently serving 250,000 students through private schooling options.
In Washington D.C., Betsy DeVos will stick to what she’s always believed in while fighting to bring her platform up to a national level. Betsy DeVos has thus far cemented herself as a political fighter and we’ll see what change she can make in the years to come.