Today, Tom Perez joins his fellow Democrats to kick off the DNC’s Future Forum in Phoenix, Arizona. His appearance in Phoenix caps off a week of announcements and endorsements. Tom announced his plans for a Voter Empowerment Office and Cybersecurity Office within the DNC. Tom also earned the endorsements of Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf and former Mayors Michael Nutter, Doug Palmer, and Shirley Franklin. All four cited Tom’s experience as an organizer and a lifelong fighter for progressive change.
As each candidate takes the stage tomorrow afternoon, here’s a look at what Democrats across the country have been reading this week.
On Tom’s vision for the Democratic Party…
Tom Perez on Medium: Making a Case in Arizona
"When you’re a civil rights lawyer, you learn a thing or two about bullies. They talk tough. They act tall. They take advantage of the voiceless and the vulnerable, and they attack people who may not look or sound like them. I’ve encountered quite a few of those in my day. The white supremacists in Texas who I prosecuted for racially motivated hate crimes; the big banks that I went after for foreclosing on active-duty service members; and of course, the immigrant-bashing Sheriff Joe Arpaio who I took on right here in Arizona."
Talking Points Memo: The Josh Marshall Show Episode 12: Tom Perez On The Importance Of Organizing
“In this special edition of the Josh Marshall Show, Josh talks to U.S. Labor Secretary and candidate for DNC Chair Tom Perez. Perez talks about his childhood in Buffalo, his belief in the importance of community organizing, and why he's the right choice for DNC Chair.”
National Public Radio: Tom Perez: 'We've Gotten Away From The Basics As A Party'
“On Friday, All Things Considered host Audie Cornish chatted with one who is closely tied to the Obama administration, Tom Perez... [Tom:] 'Organizing has to be a 12-month endeavor. You can't show up at a church every fourth October and say, 'Vote for me,' and call that persuasion. And that's what we've done. We've gotten away from the basics as a party. And what I want to do, if I have the good fortune of being elected chair, is do exactly that."
Politico: PLAYBOOK INTERVIEW -- Tom Perez
“Debate calendar should be set earlier: ‘One of the things I certainly would recommend is that we set a debate calendar for the presidential cycle well in advance of when we know who the candidates are going to be. That to me is an example of how we can do things that will ensure that we are not in any way shape or form putting the thumb on the scales of justice.’”
On Tom’s plans to rebuild the party’s infrastructure…
“The Takoma Park resident, a former Montgomery County and Maryland state official, said the national party needs to take a more active role to ensure voters can cast a ballot, coordinating responses from state and national leaders and ‘playing offense’ by expanding voter registration in every state. ‘We are going to establish a very robust protection and empowerment effort,’ Perez told The Baltimore Sun on Monday, a day before he was to address the Maryland Democratic Party. ‘The DNC needs to play a very important role in combating [suppression] and ensuring all eligible voters can vote.’”
Cleveland Plain Dealer: Tom Perez preaches cyber security and Appalachian outreach in DNC chairman bid
“Perez sees Ohio's Appalachian region as a key target. Trump ran up the score in those areas last fall, putting once-reliably Democratic counties firmly into Republican hands. ‘What we learned from Ohio and elsewhere is that in too many corners of the country we weren't talking to people,’ he said. ‘I'm a big fan of data analytics, but good data analytics are no substitute for showing up and persuading people. ... We weren't in those communities. A big reason Hillary Clinton lost Ohio and elsewhere was this underperformance in Middle America.’”
“The hacking campaign that penetrated the Democratic National Committee prior to last year’s presidential race has prompted a candidate vying for the role of DNC chair to call for the creation of an in-house cyber expert position amid renewed discussions involving the intrusion. Tom Perez, outgoing labor secretary and potential DNC chairman, recommended establishing the position, Politico reported on Wednesday. ‘I think this office should report directly to the chair and, among other responsibilities, have them proactively monitor the DNC for attacks and breaches,’ Mr. Perez told Politico.”
On Tom earning endorsements from Democrats across the country…
Philadelphia Inquirer: Pa. Gov Wolf endorses Perez for Democratic national chair
"'Tom Perez is a proven leader with a record of delivering results for working families,' Wolf said in a statement. 'His vision for the party paired with his experience as an effective manager makes him well-suited to run the party as we move toward 2018. [...] Wolf is the fifth Democratic governor to back Perez, joining Virginia’s Terry McAuliffe; John Bell Edwards of Louisiana; John Hickenlooper of Colorado and Gina Raimondo of Rhode Island."
Atlanta Journal-Constitution: Shirley Franklin picks a side for DNC Chair
"[Former Atlanta Mayor Shirley] Franklin, who co-chaired the party’s platform committee, said Perez has spent his career 'fighting to create the beloved community that Dr. King so eloquently prescribed more than 50 years ago... If we elect him as chair of the Democratic National Committee, he will continue to work across all sectors to improve the lives of Americans,” she said. “I look forward to working with Tom Perez and our party leadership to turn Georgia blue.' The former mayors of Trenton and Philadelphia also endorsed Perez on Thursday."
Philadelphia Inquirer: Nutter backs Perez in DNC race
“Former Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter Thursday endorsed Labor Secretary Tom Perez in the race for chair of the Democratic National Committee, joining a coalition of leaders in the governing wing of the party. “The results of November’s election certainly reminded everyone in this city of just how important grassroots organizing on the ground is to our success as a party. There is no better organizer than Tom Perez,’ Nutter, former president of the U.S. Conference of Mayors, said in a statement.”