In a move, Monday, that signaled the end of his so-called “charm offensive” toward Republicans, Obama nominated dishonest and odious radical, Thomas E. Perez, to be the next Labor Department secretary.
Mr. Obama’s pick comes less than a week after a scathing audit of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, which Mr. Perez runs as an assistant attorney general. The department’s inspector general said the Civil Rights division had become riven with factions, and questioned whether Mr. Perez was completely truthful in information he gave about the decision to dismiss a high-profile voter intimidation case involving the New Black Panther Party in Philadelphia.
When the last Inspector General report came out about Civil Rights Division hiring, AAG Wan Kim promised to implement all of the suggestions. His successor AAG Tom Perez is not as magnanimous and appears resistant to implementing changes described by the report as necessary.
Senators take note.
In particular, Perez seems opposed to implementing changes regarding hiring practices which has resulted in a 100 percent liberal or leftist bias in Voting Section lawyers. Some inside the DOJ simply cannot understand that this is a problem, and for that blindness, a heavy price may be paid if Perez is nominated for Secretary of Labor. (An aside: I spent the day on Capitol Hill and there is an emerging view that Perez will not be nominated. Damaged goods. I am not sure I agree with that assessment given the people nominating spend an inordinate amount of time justifying the correctness of their position, even if it is a corroded one.)
Perez refused to take any action to fire or even reprimand Justice Dept employees who engaged in bad behavior.
Senator Charles Grassely is asking the same question posed by this blog: Why do the people who engaged in bad behavior as documented by the Inspector General’s report still have jobs? The Washington Times:
“A senior Republican in Congress said Wednesday that he wants to know why Justice Department employees whose “hostile, racist and inappropriate behavior” was documented in a new report — including one who admitted lying to the department’s office of inspector general — are still employed.”
- On April 23, 2012, Perez’s Justice Department sued the city of Jacksonville, Florida, claiming that its use of written tests to determine promotions in its fire department had “resulted in a disparate impact upon black candidates,” who registered passing grades at significantly lower rates than their white counterparts. “This complaint should send a clear message to all public employers that employment practices that have the effect of excluding qualified candidates on account of race will not be tolerated,” said Perez.
- This was just one of numerous Perez/DOJ lawsuits designed to force various municipal fire (and police) departments to do away with written tests for membership. In a case against the New York Fire Department, Perez and DOJ argued in favor of what amounted to strict racial quotas favoring blacks, even if they scored as low as 30% on their qualifying exams.
Perez has emphasized CRD’s “critical work” of “monitoring federal, state, and local elections across the country to ensure that voting takes place free of unlawful intimidation.” But in June 2010, J. Christian Adams, a five-year DOJ veteran, resigned to protest the “corrupt nature” of DOJ’s dismissal of a case involving two Philadelphia-based members of the New Black Panther Party who had intimidated white voters with racial slurs and threats of violence on Election Day, 2008. Adams cited Perez and Thomas Perrelli (the associate attorney general) as the two DOJ officials most responsible for dropping the case. In July 2010, Adams gave damning public testimony about how Perez and other Obama DOJ officials believed that “civil rights law should not be enforced in a race-neutral manner, and should never be enforced against blacks or other national minorities.”
In September 2010, Christopher Coates—Voting Section Chief for the DOJ—testified to the U.S. Civil Rights Commission and corroboated Adams’ assertion that the Department had routinely ignored civil rights cases involving white victims. For more than a year, Perez had denied the Commission’s requests to hear Coates’ testimony and had instructed Coates not to testify. But in September 2010, Coates finally chose to go public with his story and asked for protection under whistleblower laws. For the full text of Coates’ testimony, click here.
Perez has played a key role in opening investigations of several large urban police departments for systematic civil-rights abuses such as harassment of racial minorities, false arrests, and excessive use of force. In 2011, for instance, Perez’s CRD initiated a high-profile push to reform the New Orleans Police Department; “pattern and practice” investigations of police departments in Newark and Seattle; and a preliminary investigation of the Denver Police Department. These actions were consistent with what Perez had stated in September 2010: “In case you haven’t heard, the Civil Rights Division is once again open for business. There were very few [pattern and practice] cases during the prior administration.” On another occasion (in April 2010), Perez had stated: “Criminal prosecutions alone, I have learned, are not enough to change the culture of a police department.” As of March 2013, Perez had initiated 17 probes of police and sheriff’s departments across the United States—more probes of that type than CRD had ever previously conducted under any individual’s leadership.
In 2011, Perez led a DOJ lawsuit against Alabama’s recently passed anti-illegal immigration law (HB-56), similar to Arizona’s 2010 law.
In July 2011, Perez addressed a luncheon meeting of the National Council of La Raza (NCLR), a pro-amnesty immigration group with which he has long had a close relationship. In his remarks, Perez praised NCLR’s work and expressed gratitude for its steadfast support of President Obama’s agendas. He also lauded the organization’s members as valuable “change agents” and “serial activists” who “will [help] move America forward.” And he characterized opponents of immigration reform as racists: “It’s undeniable that what else we see out there in America is an absolute headwind of intolerance, and it’s a headwind of intolerance that has been manifested in many different ways shapes and forms.”
In December 2011, the Justice Department blocked a new South Carolina law requiring voters to present valid identification at their polling places on election day. Claiming that the law discriminated against minority voters, Perez wrote: “Although the state has a legitimate interest in preventing voter fraud and safeguarding voter confidence … the state’s submission did not include any evidence or instance of either in-person voter impersonation or any other type of fraud that is not already addressed by the state’s existing voter identification requirement.” Perez further contended that the law violated Section 5 of the 1965 Voting Rights Act, because 8.4% of the state’s registered white voters lacked photo ID, compared to 10% of nonwhite voters.
In late May 2012, Perez and DOJ ordered the state of Florida to halt its efforts—which were already underway—to verify the identity and eligibility of the people listed on its voter rolls. DOJ explained its actions by saying that it had not yet been able to verify that Florida’s efforts “neither have the purpose nor will have the effect of discriminating on account of race, color, or membership in a language minority group.” In a letter (dated June 11) to the Florida Secretary of State, Perez charged that Florida was violating the National Voter Registration Act and the Voting Rights Act. “Please immediately cease this unlawful conduct,” he wrote.
Florida was not compliant with DOJ, however. “We have an obligation to make sure the voter rolls are accurate and we are going to continue forward and do everything that we can legally do to make sure than ineligible voters cannot vote,” said Chris Cate, a spokesman for Florida secretary of state Ken Detzner. “We are firmly committed to doing the right thing and preventing ineligible voters from being able to cast a ballot. We are not going to give up our efforts to make sure the voter rolls are accurate.” Earlier that year, Florida election officials had identified some 53,000 still-registered voters who were deceased, and another 2,600 who were non-citizens. In fact, state officials estimated that the total number of non-citizens on Florida’s registered-voter rolls was as high as 182,000. Nevertheless, DOJ filed suit against Florida on June 12, 2012. “Because the State has indicated its unwillingness to comply with [DOJ’s] requirements, I have authorized the initiation of an enforcement action against Florida in federal court,” said Perez.
In early August 2012, Rep. Trent Franks (R-Arizona), a member of the House Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on the Constitution, asked Perez: “Will you tell us here today that this Administration’s Department of Justice will never entertain or advance a proposal that criminalizes speech against any religion?” Perez refused to answer, four separate times. Breitbart.com provided some context for this:
“Last October, at George Washington University, there was a meeting between DOJ officials, including Perez, and Islamist advocates against free speech. Representatives from the Islamist side included Mohamed Magid, president of the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA)…. The leader of the Islamist [side] was Sahar Aziz, an Egyptian-born American lawyer and Fellow at the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding, a Muslim advocacy group based in Michigan. At the meeting, the Islamists lobbied for: cutbacks in U.S. anti-terror training; limits on the power of terrorism investigators; changes in agent training manuals; [and] a legal declaration that criticism of Islam in the United States should be considered racial discrimination. Aziz said that the word ‘Muslim’ has become ‘racialized’ and, once American criticism of Islam was silenced, the effect would be to ‘take [federal] money away from local police departments and fusion centers who are spying on all of us.'”
In March 2013, the American Spectator reported that “Perez has overseen most of the unprecedentedly naked politicization of DOJ’s Civil Rights Division,” as evidenced by the fact that “every one” of the 113 people his CRD had hired for supposedly non-political civil-service positions were “demonstrably liberal activists.” Moreover, said the report, Perez had “insisted on personally approving each of these new hires.”
Also under Perez, the DOJ has repeatedly slow-walked efforts intended to help ensure that overseas military personnel (who tend to support Republican candidates by a wide margin) could exercise their voting rights. Meanwhile, Perez’s division has strived—without jurisdiction—to help felons (who overwhelmingly support Democratic candidates) regain voting privileges in a number of states.
Megyn Kelly and Chris-stirewalt discussed the Thomas Perez nomination on America Live, Monday. Kelly asked a good question – is it less controversial for Perez to be moved to labor or stay at the Civil Rights division of the DOJ? In other words where will this malevolent a$$hole do the most damage?
Senator Jeff Sessions released this statement on the Perez nomination, Monday:
WASHINGTON—U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL), a senior member of the Senate Judiciary committee, commented today on President Obama’s nomination of Thomas Perez to serve as the Secretary of Labor:“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. Mr. Perez has also had a controversial tenure at the Department of Justice where he has demonstrated a fundamentally political approach to the law.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.”