That did not cease her boss, President Donald Trump, from publicly undermining her on Thursday, when he instructed reporters that he had “overridden” the proposed minimize — although that is the third yr in a row that DeVos had included it in her annual funding request to Congress.
“The Particular Olympics will likely be funded. I simply instructed my folks, I wish to fund the Particular Olympics and I simply approved a funding of the Particular Olympics,” Trump instructed reporters on the White Home earlier than departing for a rally in Michigan.
He continued, “I have been to the Particular Olympics. I feel it is unbelievable and I simply approved a funding. I heard about it this morning. I’ve overridden my folks. We’re funding the Particular Olympics.”
After Trump spoke, DeVos instantly launched a press release saying:
“I’m happy and grateful the President and I see eye-to-eye on this situation and that he has determined to fund our Particular Olympics grant. That is funding I’ve fought for behind the scenes over the past a number of years.”
The Particular Olympics launched a press release later within the day to specific gratitude to Trump for the change.
“He joins an extended historical past of over 50 years of United States Presidents and Members of Congress on each side of the aisle of their assist of Particular Olympics and the work we do in communities all through the nation,” the Particular Olympics mentioned.
The White Home makes funds suggestions to Congress yearly, however has no energy to truly implement cuts. This explicit funding minimize was unlikely to ever move Congress, calling into query why the White Home would make such an apparent public relations misstep.
DeVos has proposed the elimination twice earlier than and lawmakers have rejected it, appropriating $17.6 million for the Particular Olympics final yr as a part of an general funding enhance for the division.
Earlier on Thursday, DeVos instructed senators that she was not personally concerned within the choice to suggest eliminating funding for the Particular Olympics.
Illinois Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin raised the difficulty at a funds listening to, saying that if DeVos hadn’t provide you with the minimize, the one who did ought to get “a Particular Olympic gold medal for insensitivity.”
However DeVos continued to defend the minimize included in her division’s funds, which maintains the identical degree of funding for core particular education schemes, together with grants to states underneath the division’s People with Disabilities Schooling Act.
DeVos mentioned that whereas the Particular Olympics is an “superior” group — and one which she has donated a few of her wage to — it is usually vital to maintain federal spending in test. She proposed a 12% minimize to her funds general.
Trump publicly challenged his Cupboard heads final yr to make 5% funds cuts.
Congress has rejected earlier requests to cut back the Schooling Division’s funds, even when Republicans managed each chambers.