In no other administration would Betsy DeVos have landed the Secretary of Education position at the Department of Education. This is not an indictment of Betsy DeVos so much as it is a salutation for President Trump. Donald Trump rose to the White House by promising to change what was expected of himself and other political leaders and his appointments to these high-ranking positions have shown that he is more than willing to follow through on his promise. After getting narrowly confirmed by the Senate, Betsy DeVos took up her position as the Secretary of Education and immediately got to work.
When President Trump decided to withdraw federal policy protecting transgender students at school, Betsy DeVos put up a fight. DeVos would meet with LGTBQ representatives at the Education Department in order to let them know what was coming and that she had resisted the move. Publicly, however, Betsy DeVos was onboard with President Trump and his decision. This situation paints the exact picture that should represent Betsy DeVos. She is willing to fight for what she believes in, but she understands the importance of party unity when it comes to governance.
Betsy DeVos has gained a reputation for being steely-eyed behind the scenes and completely capable of going head-to-head with any seasoned politician. This reputation came to DeVos thanks to nearly 30 years in the public arena as a champion for charter schools in Michigan and, eventually, the rest of the country. In fact, DeVos helped to elevate the stance of chartered schools into the national discourse where it had previously never gotten heard. So, despite her strong history of political activism, DeVos still had to overcome several major roadblocks. Namely, DeVos was getting typecast as a person she was not, thanks to the person she appeared to be — quiet and unassuming.
As a member of the Michigan Republican Party, DeVos would make a name for herself as a political fighter. Mike Cox, a former attorney general at the state level, said, “In Michigan politics, she instilled fear in a lot of people, and it’s not just because she’s a billionaire.” Cox would go on to praise DeVos by saying, “I found Betsy to be very determined, steely, when she sets her mind on a goal.” Now, Betsy DeVos needs to harness what made her so capable at the state level and bring it to the national level where she will have the chance to make sweeping changes across the country.
Follow Betsy DeVos on twitter.