President formally nominates Perez as labor secretary
By Hazel Bradford | March 18, 2013 3:36 pm
Thomas E. Perez was nominated Monday by President Barack Obama as secretary of labor.
In a White House ceremony, Mr. Obama said Mr. Perez would play an important role on his economic team, whose top priority “is doing everything we need to do to make sure that we're growing our economy and that we're strengthening our middle class.” Mr. Obama said that Mr. Perez, the son of Dominican immigrants, has “tackled plenty of tough issues, (but) has also spent a career as a consensus-builder.”
Mr. Perez, an assistant U.S. attorney general for civil rights, Maryland's secretary of labor from 2007 to 2009.
Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, applauded the choice of Mr. Perez, “who has served as a voice for the most vulnerable.”
The Senate has not scheduled a confirmation hearing; Mr. Perez is expected to win confirmation easily.
In January, Hilda Solis resigned as labor secretary. That position is being filled on an interim basis by Seth Harris, the deputy labor secretary.
Mr. Perez did not return a phone call by press time.