Senate confirms Cardona as Education secretary

The Senate voted 64-33 in favor of the nomination, with 14 Republicans becoming a member of Democrats to again Cardona.

The bipartisan vote was a stark distinction to the contentious affirmation 4 years in the past of Betsy DeVos, who was confirmed after then-Vice President Mike Pence solid the tie-breaking vote.

Cardona’s affirmation was additionally extra bipartisan than that of John B. King Jr., President Barack Obama’s second secretary of Education, who was confirmed on a 49-40 vote. The 5 secretaries of Education previous to King have been every confirmed by the Senate both on a voice vote or beneath unanimous consent.


Biden’s number of Cardona makes good on a marketing campaign promise to select a public faculty educator to be his secretary of Education. Cardona beforehand was a classroom instructor, district administrator and assistant superintendent earlier than being named in 2019 as Connecticut’s state training chief.

In Connecticut, Cardona pushed to reopen faculties in the course of the pandemic with out alienating the state’s lecturers unions, who backed his affirmation. However he’ll now must stroll that political tightrope on the nationwide stage amid an more and more acrimonious debate over how and when faculties ought to be open for in-person instruction.

Republican leaders have sought to put the blame for closed school rooms on the Biden administration and have been hammering Democrats and lecturers unions over the problem for weeks. In Congress, GOP lawmakers have repeatedly launched amendments that might require faculties to reopen to be able to obtain extra Covid aid funding.

The U.S. secretary of Education doesn’t have the facility to straight power faculties to reopen their school rooms, and such choices are made on the state and native degree.

The Biden administration has mentioned that it’s going to make good on its promise to reopen faculties by offering them with the federal well being steerage and funding wanted to soundly reopen. The administration’s Covid aid package deal, which handed the Home on Saturday, units apart $170 billion for training.

Throughout his affirmation listening to final month, Cardona pledged to do “every thing in our energy to soundly reopen faculties.”

He emphasised the necessity for Congress to go Covid aid for faculties and known as for expanded surveillance testing in faculties as effectively as prioritized vaccines for lecturers. “If we actually wish to recuperate,” he mentioned, “we actually want to take a position now or we’re gonna pay later.”

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