Education Secretary Betsy DeVos’s security detail, one of the most extensive in the Trump administration, will cost U.S. taxpayers nearly $20 million through the fall of 2019.
DeVos began receiving nonstop security fromFox News Host calls Kellyanne Conway’s husband an idiot for publicly humiliating his wife. the U.S. Marshals Service immediately after she was just barely confirmed to her position by the Senate in February 2017. No other cabinet member has been provided an armed detail like the one assigned to the education secretary, the cost of which will be $19.8 million according to figures provided by the Marshals Service to NBC News.
The security team was assigned by now former Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who departed the White House the day after the midterm elections at the president’s request. The Marshals Service was ordered to protect DeVos after theMichigan billionaire was heckled and barred entry to a public middle school in Washington by a group of protesters.
The Department of Justice said in a statement that DeVos’s security team was assembled after “threats” were made against the education secretary. “The U.S.M.S. was identified to assist in this area based on its expertise and long experience providing executive protection,” the agency added.
DeVos’s security squad cost about $5.3 million in 2017, $6.8 million in 2018 and is projected to cost $7.74 million in 2019. The cost is eventually reimbursed the Education Department. The average amount of money spent per day on the Marshals Service is about $34,000.
A spokeswoman for the Education Department told NBC News that DeVos had not requested the security detail herself, but did say that the threats made against the secretary “are significant. Otherwise, the trained professionals who made the call to escalate her detail wouldn’t have done so.”
Rumors were circulating shortly after the midterm elections that DeVos was going to be stepping down from her position in January. Democrats winning back control of the House of Representatives means that DeVos and her more controversial policies are likely to be placed under more scrutiny, as Democrats will take over the House Committee on Education and Workforce. Virginia Representative Bobby Scott is likely to make a push to become chair of the committee.
DeVos is likely to be questioned by Democratic lawmakers on her rule changes on sexual assault. Reports indicate the education secretary is planning to introduce an overhaul of Obama-era guidances, which will include giving more rights to the accused. If the rules are put into place, those accused of sexual assault will be given the ability to cross-examine alleged victims.
But DeVos’s office squashed any gossip of her departure, telling the Detroit Free Press that “the rumors are just that … rumors. The Secretary has no plans of stepping down.”