As votes continued to be tallied Tuesday night, many current lawmakers on congressional education committees held onto their seats, while Democrats managed to regain control of the House of Representatives.
At least four Democrats in swing states who serve on the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee—Sen. Bob Casey of Pennsylvania, Sen. Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin, Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia, and Sen. Tina Smith of Minnesota—were re-elected to their seats. Still, Republicans are projected to keep control of the chamber.
Meanwhile, at least one lawmaker on the House Committee on Education and the Workforce—Rep. David Brat (R-VA)—was unseated, as he lost his race to Abigail Spanberger. Reps. Raul Grijalva (D-AZ), Lloyd Smucker (R-PA), and Bradley Byrne (R-AL)—who all serve on the education committee—were re-elected to their seats. Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-NC), who currently chairs the committee, defeated Democratic opponent DD Adams Tuesday night.
As of Wednesday morning, Democrats had picked up 26 seats in the House—three more than the 23 needed to gain control of the chamber. Democrats have said that should they take control of the House they would change the name of the education committee to the House Committee on Education and Labor, which is what it has been historically called with Democrats in power.
With the change in leadership in the House will likely come increased oversight and scrutiny of the Department of Education (ED) and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos. Democrats in both chambers have been critical of DeVos since she took office two years ago. Rep. Bobby Scott (D-VA), currently the ranking member of the committee, will likely become chairman of the House education committee.
Publication Date: 11/7/2018