We wrote extensively about Tom Perez during his scandal-ridden tenure at the Department of Justice, and Paul has written about him here, here and here in the context of President Obama’s nominating Perez to be Secretary of Labor.
There are many good reasons to oppose Perez’s nomination, but perhaps the most fundamental is that Perez stands in opposition to the founding purpose of the Department of Labor. The legislation authorizing the Labor Department says:
The purpose of the Department of Labor shall be to foster, promote, and develop the welfare of the wage earners of the United States, to improve their working conditions, and to advance their opportunities for profitable employment.
Yet Tom Perez is committed to immigration policies that will damage the welfare of working Americans and set back their opportunities for profitable employment. Senator Jeff Sessions said it well in a press release this morning:
This is an unfortunate and needlessly divisive nomination. The top priority of the Secretary of Labor should be to create jobs and higher wages for American workers. But Mr. Perez has aggressively sought ways to allow the hiring of more illegal workers. …
His views on illegal immigration are far outside the mainstream. Mr. Perez previously served as the President of the Board of Casa de Maryland, a fringe advocacy group that has instructed illegal immigrants on how to escape detection, and also promoted illegal labor sites and driver’s licenses for illegal immigrants. As a councilman in 2003, Mr. Perez advocated for allowing illegal immigrants to be able to use foreign identification, known as matricula cards, in place of a valid U.S.-issued ID to work and receive public services. By nominating Mr. Perez to this important post, the President has placed his drive to promote his flawed immigration policies over the needs of the millions of unemployed Americans. We need a Secretary of Labor who fights to create jobs for American workers, not one that undermines legal work requirements. It is plain that if the policies of Mr. Perez were to be enacted, jobs for Americans would be harder to come by and wages lower. He is the wrong man for this job.
Obama’s appointment of Tom Perez to head DOL is not just ill-advised, it is perverse.