Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg criticized United States Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos in his national campaign ads.
In his ads, Buttigieg critiqued DeVos for the ongoing student loan problems and for eliminating Obama-era educational policies, according to MLive. The South Bend mayor started running the ads critical of the Michigan native this week just as kids head back to school in the state. Buttigieg called out DeVos more than any other Trump administration official in his national campaign ads.
“The ads come at a make-or-break moment for our public education system,” Buttigieg’s campaign said in a statement to MLive. “The same old debates have left the country with underfunded schools, underpaid teachers, and growing inequality. Public education is key to meeting the challenges of today and the future, which is why Pete is offering a new approach and bold ideas that transform how we value our teachers, fund our schools, and educate our students.”
Last month, Buttigieg jokingly criticized DeVos at a Detroit fundraising event by making a deal with the crowd.
“Let’s make a deal. You promise not to judge Indiana by the vice president and we’ll promise not to judge Michigan by the secretary of Education,” he said.
The secretary of education has been a popular target for Democratic presidential candidates. In the past, Sen. Elizabeth Warren has called DeVos “the worst secretary of education we’ve seen” and Minnesota’s Sen. Amy Klobuchar said “she shouldn’t be in her job.”
As a candidate, Buttigieg supports making college debt-free for lower-income students and believes in an “equitable” public education. He also supports higher wages for teachers. The education sector has donated $493,967 to his campaign so far.
Recently, Trump ordered DeVos to cancel student loan debt for veterans who are severely disabled.
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Zachery Schmidt is the digital editor of Battleground State News. Follow Zachery on Twitter.
Photos “Betsy DeVos” and “Pete Buttigieg” by Gage Skidmore. CC BY-SA 2.0. Background Photo “Lyndon Baines Johnson Department of Education Building” by Farragutful. CC BY-SA 4.0.