March 27, 2019

I was sorely tempted to title this article, "Betsy DeVos Hates All Children." Better judgement prevailed. Not just because I'm afraid to be sued, but also because I'm sure it is not true. She only hates children who are not white, Christian, heterosexual, neurotypical, and physically perfect. All at once.

In Tuesday's House budget hearing, DeVos plastered on a smile while she refused to acknowledge the humanity of LGBQT children, or explain why she was A-OK with cutting funding for autism and eliminating Special Olympics funding while raising salaries for Executives by 16%. Thank the Flying Spaghetti Monster for Democratic Representatives like Rep. Mark Pocan, from Wisconsin, who was more than happy to verbally flay her for not answering his questions.

REP. POCAN: I'm reclaiming my time if I could, there's a couple more parts to this. Also we have cuts in the special education grants to states from 3 million to 2.2 million to 26 percent cut and then also in this budget you have a $7.5 million cut to the National Technical Institute for the Blind, a $13 million cut to Gallaudet University, a $5 million cut for a federal program for print books for blind students, and you recently had a federal judge rule against us on some areas around special education. I have two nephews with autism. What is it that we have a problem with with children who are in special education? Why are we cutting all of these programs over and over within this budget?

DEVOS: We have continued to retain the funding levels for IDEA and held that level ---

POCAN: I'm sorry, I don't think I brought up IDEA, I believe I brought up Special Olympics and special education grants to states, the National Technical Institute for the Blind, Gallaudet University, the federal program for print books, so if you could address those ---

DEVOS: I will address the broader question.

POCAN: Or if you could actually address the question I asked. That's even a better way to answer a question.

DEVOS: Supporting students with special needs we have continued to hold that funding level, that funding at a level amount and in the context of a budget proposal that is a 10 percent reduction per --

POCAN: I will reclaim my time. You're not going to answer my question. Let me know try one last one, maybe I will do better than charter schools if I get this one covered by you, you've got a cut to the department that is a 12 percent agency cut. But you have a 15.6% point increase in your executive salary appropriation. How can you justify that?

DEVOS: The department funding includes a building modernization piece.

POCAN: I didn't ask about buildings.


God, that was beautiful. And he was so gentlemanly as he did it! That would have been so much more fun to watch if it wasn't real life...and she wasn't actually our *gag reflex* Education Secretary.

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