February 17, 2017

Tom Perez Enters Final Week Under Fire

Former Labor Secretary Tom Perez, the establishment candidate in the DNC Chairman’s race, is taking incoming fire as the DNC vote approaches. Perez opened himself up to criticism when he announced that he was approaching the vote total needed to become DNC Chairman.

This led Bernie Sanders acolyte Congressman Keith Ellison (D-MN) to fire back that Perez’s announcement served to “exert pressure” on DNC members:

“’One of the other great candidates for this race released an unverifiable public whip count earlier this week. You received a voicemail, email and a text message trying to make the race sound like it is over. And the goal is clear: to exert pressure on you,’ he wrote in the email, which doesn’t mention Perez — his fellow front-runner — by name.”

This back and forth comes at a poor time for Perez. Earlier this week, Perez’s appearance at a DNC forum was interrupted by outspoken protesters who questioned his liberal credentials.

At the same time Perez was facing criticism for his unverified announcement, he suffered a major blow from SEIU. SEIU has a lot of power over the Democratic Party, and today Politico reported that they were pressuring their members who had DNC votes to vote for Ellison. The powerful labor union’s support for Ellison is especially embarrassing for Perez since his last job was as President Obama’s Labor Secretary.

The fact that SEIU followed closely behind the United Auto Workers in supporting Ellison casts serious doubts on Perez’s purported strength. As the DNC candidates enter the final week of their hard-fought contest, one thing is certain. Whoever wins will take over a completely fractured Democratic Party.