2 Republicans won't vote for Trump education pick Betsy DeVos, rejection looms



WASHINGTON, Feb 1 (Reuters) - Two Republicans in the U.S. Senate said on Wednesday they will not vote to confirm billionaire philanthropist Betsy DeVos as the next secretary of education, increasing the possibility that the charter-schools advocate will be rejected by the Senate.

Democrats, who have been uniformly opposed to DeVos and are expected to vote against her as a block, only need to bring three Republicans to their side to stop the nomination. She would then be only the 10th cabinet nominee in U.S. history rejected by Congress.

Soon after Senator Susan Collins, a Republican from Maine, and Senator Lisa Murkowski, a Republican from Alaska, said they would not vote for DeVos, the White House said it is confident that she will ultimately be approved. (Reporting by Lisa Lambert, Richard Cowan and Susan Heavey; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)

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Betsy DeVos through the years
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Betsy DeVos through the years

Continuing a day of one-on-one meetings with candidates for positions in his cabinet, President-elect Donald Trump met with Betsy DeVos, two polar opposites thought to be in contention for the education portfolio.

(Photo by Andy Katz/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images)

U.S. President-elect Donald Trump and Vice President-elect Mike Pence stand with Betsy DeVos before their meeting at the main clubhouse at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, New Jersey, U.S., November 19, 2016.

(REUTERS/Mike Segar)

U.S. President-elect Donald Trump and Vice President-elect Mike Pence emerge with Betsy DeVos after their meeting at the main clubhouse at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, New Jersey, U.S., November 19, 2016.

(REUTERS/Mike Segar)

Continuing a day of one-on-one meetings with candidates for positions in his cabinet, President-elect Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence met with Betsy DeVos, two polar opposites thought to be in contention for the education portfolio.

(Photo by Andy Katz/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images)

Grant Hill #33 of the Los Angeles Clippers shakes hands with Owner Dick DeVos, Chairman of Amway and his wife Betsy DeVos during the game against the Orlando Magic during the game on February 6, 2013 at Amway Center in Orlando, Florida.

(Photo by Fernando Medina/NBAE via Getty Images)

US President George W. Bush and First Lady Laura Bush wave after they were introduced by the Chair of the Michigan Republican Party Betsy DeVos 30 October 2004 in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Bush is on his final three days of campaigning prior for the election November 02.

(STEPHEN JAFFE/AFP/Getty Images)

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