Education Nominee Pulled Over Offensive Blog Posts

November 10, 2017

The Trump administration on Thursday said it would pull the nomination of Michigan state Rep. Tim Kelly for assistant secretary for career, technical, and adult education after years-old blog posts making offensive remarks about Muslims, women, and poor people received public attention, according to Education Week and Politico.

Kelly, a Republican, told the Detroit News newspaper that the comments in his blog expressed "mainstream" conservative positions. 

“This has been a terribly distressing thing over the last eight months for me and my family,” he told the newspaper of the nomination process. “Increasingly, I became aware that I perhaps was not a good match for some of this given the toxicity of the swamp.”

The blog, titled "Citizen Leader," ran from 2009 to 2012. Education Week quoted from one of Kelly's posts deriding federal programs designed to recruit women into STEM fields. 

"Research shows that bias against women in the sciences is extremely weak. Studies point to data that indicate men and women simply have different tastes when it comes to areas of study. For instance, women may be underrepresented in the fields of engineering, but thrive in the areas of sociology and biology. ... For my money, this kind of ridiculousness in academia should not be rewarded and certainly not paid for by the American taxpayer."

Kelly in another post called for a ban on air travel by Muslims.

President Trump as a candidate called for a ban on Muslims entering the U.S. As president, he has sought multiple times to enforce a travel ban applying to Muslim majority countries -- a measure that was disruptive to many international students and scholars and was denounced by university leaders. A federal judge in October blocked a third proposed travel ban. 

The work of the Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education involves administering state grants for career education programs as well as support for several community college initiatives. 

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