Former Education secretary Betsy DeVos says the GOP movement is not 'dependent on any one person,' without naming Trump
U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos speaks while Vice President Mike Pence listens during a White House Coronavirus Task Force press conference July 8, 2020.
Betsy DeVos targeted individual figures with great power in politics on Saturday.
The former Secretary of Education spoke at the Mackinac Republican Leadership Conference in Michigan.
DeVos, a native of Michigan, didn't specifically mention Trump in her comments to GOP believers.
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Former US Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos on Saturday implicitly criticized former President Donald Trump's influence on the GOP and expressed concern that "principles have been overtaken by personalities in the party," according to the Detroit Free Press.
Speaking to the Mackinac Republican Leadership Conference in Michigan, DeVos said the Republican movement was not "dependent on any one person" but made no direct reference to the former president.
"Politics is so often about people now, not politics that directly affect life," she added, according to the newspaper.
The comments reveal blatant criticism from a top member of Trump's former administration over the pitfalls of a political party channeling energies into a single figure.
While many Democrats and even some Republicans have complained that the former president has become the party's nerve center, particularly in the context of the 2020 presidential election and ongoing allegations of mass electoral fraud, which never came true, DeVos chose to put the issue in front of the party faithful.
In the past, the conference served as a platform for future Republican presidential candidates, but Trump has effectively frozen the potential candidate field by not yet announcing his plans for 2024.
DeVos, however, took on the role of political warrior and laced himself into Democratic Governor Gretchen Whitmer, who is due for re-election in 2022 and was convicted by Conservatives for applying a wave of COVID-19 restrictions during the pandemic.
The former secretary said her tenure in Washington, DC, which lasted through January, was like a dentist appointment - which most people don't like but consider necessary - adding that she “wasn't under the thumb of this Michigan woman had to live ”. ”, A nod to the way Trump referred to the governor.
During his speech at Mackinac, DeVos continued to advocate school selection and public funding for parish schools, and broke the state's constitutional prohibition on using public funds in private schools, according to The Free Press.
"Education is about students, not systems," she said during her speech, arguing that education funding "should be tied to students, not systems and buildings."
The former Wolverine State native and former chair of the Michigan Republican Party was a highly controversial candidate to run the Department of Education when Trump nominated her for the role because of her lack of public education experience.
In February 2017, DeVos was upheld by the Senate by 51:50 after a controversial confirmatory process, with then-Vice President Mike Pence breaking a 50:50 tie when GOP Sens. Susan Collins from Maine and Lisa Murkowski from Alaska joined each Democrat to oppose the nomination.
It was the first time in US history that a vice president had to surrender a cabinet candidate.
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