The word is that President Obama has settled on Thomas Perez as his nominee to be Secretary of Labor. That nomination would continue the trend of atrocious, in-your-face, leftist nominees that has characterized Obama’s second term.
We first wrote about Perez when Obama nominated him to head the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice. As I explained on Power Line and in a Wasington Times op-ed, Perez had argued for discrimination in favor of African-American candidates for med school admission. He had also expressed his eagerness to “examine whether a similar case could be made in other professions.”
Perez next came to our attention in connection with the Holder Justice Departments’s decision to drop the case against all defendants in the New Black Panther Party voter intimidation case, except for the defendant who actually carried a weapon at the polling station. I happen to believe this decision was legally defensible, but always suspected it was based on politics, not the merits.
Be that as it may, Thomas Perez appears to have lied about his involvement in the controversial decision. As we discussed here, a federal district court judge, Reggie Walton, found that internal DOJ documents about the New Black Panther Party voter intimidation case “contradict Perez’s testimony that political leadership was not involved in” the decision to dismiss the case.
According to Judge Walton, the DOJ documents, including emails from former Associate Attorney General Thomas Perrelli (who was the number-two official at DOJ) and former Democratic election lawyer and Deputy Associate Attorney General Sam Hirsch, “revealed that political appointees within DOJ were conferring about the status and resolution of the New Black Panther Party case in the days preceding the DOJ’s dismissal of claims.” Yet, at a hearing before the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights on May 14, 2010, Perez was asked whether “any political leadership [was] involved in the decision not to pursue this particular case.” Perez’s answer, under oath, was an unqualified “No.”
Clearly, Perez should not be confirmed unless, at a minimum, he somehow manages to reconcile his false testimony with the written record.
If confirmed as Secretary of Labor, Perez would, it seems to me, have a major role to play in the implementation of key provisions of any new immigration legislation. Given his leftism and apparent lack of honesty, the prospect of Perez as Secretary of Labor constitutes another strong argument against passing comprehensive immigration reform.