Updated Jun 9, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Betsy DeVos talked 25th Amendment after Trump "crossed line" on Jan. 6

Betsy DeVos
Betsy DeVos listens during a Cabinet meeting in May 2020. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Former Education Secretary Betsy DeVos spoke about her decision to resign from the Trump administration after the Capitol riots in an interview with USA Today, saying the events of Jan. 6 made it "obvious" to her she couldn't continue in her role.

Driving the news: DeVos, one of the longest-serving members of Trump's Cabinet, confirmed to USA Today she spoke with Pence about invoking the 25th Amendment.

  • In her resignation letter to Trump, DeVos wrote, "There is no mistaking the impact your rhetoric had on the situation, and it is the inflection point for me.”

The big picture: DeVos dove deeper into the reasoning behind her resignation in her upcoming book, "Hostages No More: The Fight for Education Freedom and the Future of the American Child."

  • "To me, there was a line in the sand. It wasn’t about the election results. It was about the values and image of the United States. It was about public service rising above self. The president had lost sight of that," she wrote in the book, per USA Today.
  • DeVos told USA Today that in the aftermath of the Capitol riot she spoke to former Vice President Mike Pence and other colleagues about the possibility of invoking the 25th Amendment to remove Trump from office, but that Pence "made it very clear that he was not going to go in that direction."

What she's saying: Trump's obsession with the results of the 2020 election mean that his "mind was elsewhere" and that "most of the staff in the White House was trying to respond and react and deal with that," DeVos said in the interview.

  • "I really felt that everything I could accomplish in office had been accomplished based on that reality and that dynamic," she said.
  • “When I saw what was happening on Jan. 6 and didn’t see the president step in and do what he could have done to turn it back or slow it down or really address the situation, it was just obvious to me that I couldn’t continue."
  • “I was thinking about the kids I was there to represent, and what they are seeing and what they are taking away from this — it was not defensible in any way.”
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