The Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) voted on Wednesday to approve President Trump’s nominee for General Counsel at the U.S. Department of Education – Carlos Muñiz – along with a number of nominees for other federal agencies.
Muñiz testified in front of the Committee last month, garnering criticism from Democrats regarding his role in investigating for-profit institutions while serving as Florida deputy attorney general. Democrats also expressed concern over Muñiz’s commitment to protect the civil rights of students.
At the Committee meeting on Wednesday, Muñiz’s nomination was reported favorably to the full Senate, but members voted along party lines with all Democrats on the Committee rejecting the nomination. Next, the full Senate must vote on Muñiz’s nomination for final confirmation. It remains unclear when that vote may take place.
Muñiz is only the third ED nominee, including Secretary DeVos, to receive a hearing and a vote in the Senate. Until recently, few nominees had been put forth by the Trump Administration for top positions at ED. That process has sped up in recent weeks, but it is unlikely those nominees will testify in front of the Senate HELP Committee or be voted on within the next few weeks – in part due to the Senate’s packed schedule for the remainder of the year.
An overview of which individuals have been nominated for or are serving in an acting capacity in the top positions at ED is available below.