Education Secretary Betsy DeVos  addressed the staff at the U.S. Education Department for the first time on Wednesday, and during it made a joke about bears.

This is what she said on Wednesday:

“No need to pull any punches. For me personally this confirmation process and the drama it engendered has been a bit of a bear.”

There was laughing in the crowd.

Here’s why she said it:

At her Jan. 17 Senate confirmation hearing, where she failed to display knowledge about significant education issues, she was asked by Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) whether she would agree that guns don’t belong in schools. She said:

“I will refer back to Sen. [Mike] Enzi and the school he was talking about in Wyoming. I think probably there, I would imagine that there is probably a gun in the schools to protect from potential grizzlies.”

And when asked whether she would support President-elect Donald Trump if he, as he has promised, moves to end gun-free zones around schools, she said:

“I will support what the president-elect does.” She added: “If the question is around gun violence and the results of that, please know that my heart bleeds and is broken for those families that have lost any individual due to gun violence.”

Not surprisingly, the grizzly quote went viral on social media and was the target of jokes from television hosts and, of course, “Saturday Night Live.”

AD
AD