If the vote proceeds as expected, Vice President Mike Pence would be called on to cast the deciding vote on the nominee for education secretary in a starkly divided Senate.

Some of the Democrats who seemed most eager to oppose the education secretary nominee are among those being floated in the media and elsewhere as possible 2020 presidential contenders.

Businesses and advocacy groups are urge Congress to revamp and increase funding for the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act to help the president deliver on his economic promises.

By a party-line vote of 52-48, the Senate voted to close debate on DeVos' nomination by President Donald Trump, which has sparked a controversy unlike any seen before over a potential secretary of education.

Three new staffers with experience in education policy circles joined the list of political aides smoothing the way for the Trump administration to take over the U.S. Department of Education.

King, who served as President Barack Obama's education secretary, will be only the second leader in Ed Trust's history, taking over for Kati Haycock, its CEO and founder.

"We are sending a signal that we are unhappy with these regs," said Tyler Hernandez, a spokesman for the House education committee.

Without another Republican senator joining the two who say they'll vote against the education secretary nominee, the tally appears to be 50-50, assuming all Democrats vote "no."

It's unclear whether President Donald Trump's $20 billion federal voucher plan has legs. But don't mistake that for a lack of overall enthusiasm among GOP lawmakers for expanding school choice.

The recommendations include ideas like collecting better data on student outcomes, improving access to early childhood education, and beefing-up teacher quality.

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