Raleigh – Teachers marched this week against Republican priorities on education that can be traced back to then-Speaker Tillis’ failed agenda that put tax cuts for corporations and the wealthiest before the needs of public education. But Senator Tillis’ attacks on public education didn’t stop once he left Raleigh. In Washington, Senator Tillis cast a deciding vote to confirm anti-public education zealot Betsy DeVos as Education Secretary, proudly saying, “I’m for her.” Now, the DeVos family is paying him back, boosting his 2020 reelection campaign after already sinking $70,000 in Tillis. As education secretary, DeVos has led a campaign to roll back civil rights protections, refused to crack down on for-profit colleges, and defended a budget cutting funding for the Special Olympics. Senator Tillis is tied to the anti-public schools DeVos education agenda, and as we saw this week, North Carolina is paying attention.
NC Policy Watch: Betsy DeVos’ family boosts Tillis’ 2020 campaign
April 19, 2019
WASHINGTON — Education Secretary Betsy DeVos’ family members spent $22,400 so far this year to help fund North Carolina Republican Sen. Thom Tillis’ re-election prospects, according to federal campaign finance data released this week.
DeVos’ husband, Dick, has three siblings — Doug, Daniel and Suzanne — each of whom contributed $5,600 to Tillis’ campaign in March. Doug’s wife, Maria DeVos, also contributed $5,600 to the campaign. That’s the maximum contribution allowed per election cycle under federal election law.
As Trump’s education secretary, DeVos has been one of the administration’s most controversial cabinet officials.
She made waves during her January 2017 confirmation hearing when she cited grizzly bears as a reason that educators might need guns in schools. Since then, her policies on issues like school choice, campus sexual assault, civil rights and student debt have drawn ire from her critics.
Tillis voted in 2017 to confirm DeVos, despite a campaign from liberal groups to convince him to oppose her nomination.
“I’m for her,” Tillis said in 2017, according to the News & Observer.