Trump backs off Special Olympics funding cut

 

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on a proposal to eliminate funding for the Special Olympics (all times local):

4:30 p.m.

President Donald Trump says he is backing off a budget request to cut funding for the Special Olympics, after days of criticism.

Trump told reporters at the White House Thursday, "I've overridden my people for funding the Special Olympics."

The Trump administration's education budget proposal calls for the elimination of $17.6 million in funding for the Special Olympics, roughly 10 percent of the group's overall revenue.

RELATED: Athletes prepare for the Special Olympics

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Athletes prepare for the Special Olympics
LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 20: Minister for Sport Tracey Crouch, Samantha Bond Colin Salmon and Hugh Bonneville attend a reception hosted by the US Ambassador Matthew Barzun at his Residence at Winfield House to welcome the Special Olympics GB's World Games team on July 20, 2015 in London, England. (Photo by Tristan Fewings/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 20: Samantha Bond and Hugh Bonneville attend a reception hosted by the US Ambassador Matthew Barzun at his Residence at Winfield House to welcome the Special Olympics GB's World Games team on July 20, 2015 in London, England. (Photo by Tristan Fewings/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 20: Members of the GB special Olympics team attend a reception hosted by the US Ambassador Matthew Barzun at his Residence at Winfield House to welcome the Special Olympics GB's World Games team on July 20, 2015 in London, England. (Photo by Tristan Fewings/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 20: Minister for Sport Tracey Crouch, Samantha Bond and Colin Salmon attend a reception hosted by the US Ambassador Matthew Barzun at his Residence at Winfield House to welcome the Special Olympics GB's World Games team on July 20, 2015 in London, England. (Photo by Tristan Fewings/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 20: Colin Salmon attends a reception hosted by the US Ambassador Matthew Barzun at his residence at Winfield House to welcome the Special Olympics GB's World Games team on July 20, 2015 in London, England. (Photo by Tristan Fewings/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 20: Colin Salmon attends a reception hosted by the US Ambassador Matthew Barzun at his residence at Winfield House to welcome the Special Olympics GB's World Games team on July 20, 2015 in London, England. (Photo by Tristan Fewings/Getty Images)
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Democrats pressed Education Secretary Betsy DeVos on the topic during a Senate budget hearing Thursday, just days after House Democrats grilled her on the proposal and sparked criticism online.

DeVos said she "wasn't personally involved" in pushing for elimination of the funding, but she defended it as her agency seeks to cut $7 billion from the 2020 budget.

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11:50 a.m.

Education Secretary Betsy Devos is facing a new round of scrutiny over a proposal to eliminate funding for the Special Olympics, a cut that lawmakers say is unlikely to be approved.

Senate Democrats are pressing DeVos on the topic during a budget hearing, just after House Democrats grilled her on the proposal and sparked a wave of criticism online.

DeVos says she "wasn't personally involved" in pushing for elimination of the funding, but she is defending it as her agency seeks to cut $7 billion for the 2020 budget.

Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin says "someone has to accept responsibility for a bad decision."

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