Today, the 12 Democrats on the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee endorsed Thomas Perez, President Obama’s nominee to lead the Department of Labor.
Heritage Action’s Josh Robbins has explained why this was a terrible idea and why the Senate should absolutely not confirm Mr. Perez:
Perez initiated a baseless prosecution under the Free Access to Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act against a woman who offered sidewalk counseling in front of an abortion clinic. The FACE Act has an explicit exemption for “expressive conduct,” and as Heritage’s Hans von Spakovsky wrote, “The judge in the Florida case noted the shocking absence of any evidentiary grounds for the prosecution, or even the applicability of the FACE Act, exposing the bald partisanship of this Justice Department.” Are these types of frivolous prosecutions going to help the American work force?
Perez sued a pro-life sidewalk counselor in Florida for $10,000, claiming that she “obstructed” a car from entering an abortion clinic and that she posed an “immediate threat.”
To be clear, FACE permits sidewalk counselors to walk beside patients, coming or going, on a public sidewalk. The federal judge who heard the case severely reprimanded Perez for frivolously filing the suit with no valid evidence and no corroborating witnesses to the alleged infraction. It is clear that Perez was targeting this pro-life counselor for political reasons, not based on the evidence. Moreover, the First Amendment protects their right to speak to women entering an abortion clinic to tell them about better alternatives, but Perez doesn’t care about that.
As BuzzFeed recently pointed out, there are a lot of things that Eric Holder “just doesn’t know.” But apparently he thinks that Thomas Perez would make a great Secretary of Labor:
Holder told leaders of the House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday that Perez deserves praise for bringing a record number of cases alleging voting rights violations and police misconduct. He says Perez also has won record amounts of money in discrimination lawsuits.
Well. If you watched Mr. Holder answer questions about the IRS’s tax scandal, wherein they targeted conservative groups because they didn’t like what they stood for, you may have noted that Mr. Holder is often times more than a little confused. Unfortunately, his memory also fails to serve him well.
So maybe we can help him clear things up on the issue of Labor Secretary nominees. Mr. Perez’s work in the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division should have lead Mr. Holder to conclude that Perez is grossly under-qualified to be Labor Secretary. Not only is he unqualified, but he is downright dangerous.
It is not every week that the Senate confronts a cabinet nominee who does not believe in the equal application of the law and intends to micromanage your life, except for this week. On Thursday the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee will hold a vote on the nomination of Thomas Perez, the current Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights, to be the next Secretary of Labor. That vote will likely send Perez’s nomination to the Senate floor. Before that occurs, here’s a list of 10 examples of why Thomas Perez should not be confirmed as the next Secretary of Labor.
Perez has pushed bad labor policy while running the Civil Rights Division of the Justice Department.
1. Perez filed an anti-religious liberty brief in the Supreme Court in Hosanna-Tabor v. EEOC that involved the firing of a teacher at the Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church. The Supreme Court unanimously ruled that the Establishment Clause prevented the government from involving itself in the appointment of church ministers. Thomas Perez argued, quite extraordinarily, that the First Amendment had no bearing on the government’s ability to regulate who churches can and cannot hire to teach religion at its religious schools. Is this the type of leadership we want expanded to all of our nation’s labor practices?
BALANCE. Heritage experts have proven that balancing the budget would be great for the economy and would provide a framework in which to reduce federal spending responsibly, but as it turns out, balancing the budget is supported by public opinion as well, according to the polls:
When Rep. Paul Ryan first introduced his new budget plan, Democrats dismissed it as draconian for balancing the budget in 10 years.
But the message of bringing the federal government’s books into balance — the central idea behind the Wisconsin lawmaker’s 2014 spending plan — was quietly tested in 18 competitive House races in a late February poll by the National Republican Congressional Committee. It was a winning argument across a broad swath of politically moderate — and nearly split — districts.
The poll showed that 45 percent of Democratic voters think “balancing … the federal budget would significantly increase economic growth and create millions of American jobs.” A sky-high 61 percent of independents and 76 percent of Republicans agree.