Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Tom Perez... And The Republican Party War Against Hispanics


To avoid a discussion of the Republican Party Austerity agenda fiasco, Rience Preibus' sad GOP Autopsy Monday focused around the edges, carefully skirting the real issues that make the Republican Party anathema to so many Americans. "We've got to reach out to more Hispanic voters" doesn't work while the party is blocking attempts to pass popular and rational immigration reforms. And it doesn't work when a notorious Republican senator, whoremonger and s&m freak, David Vitter-- who last made national headlines when his wife threatened to cut his dick off if she ever heard about him hiring another prostitute, something he's been doing addictively for decades (and on the public dime)-- is viciously demonizing a well respected Latino government official nominated for a Cabinet position. Vitter has put a hold on Perez, the son of poor Dominican immigrants, who's personal story is the prototypical American Dream. Vitter has cooked up some kind of spurious nonsense about Perez being a Black Panther sympathizer and "helped illegal immigrants." Stepping on Preibus' story-line just a little?

With Hilda Solis moving on-- probably towards an eventual run for California governor-- Obama nominated Assistant Attorney General Tom Perez as the next Secretary of Labor. Predictably, Vitter and the anti-minority Senate Republicans went bonkers. As head of the Civil Rights Division of the Justice Department, Perez concentrated on protecting voting rights for all American citizens. Guess who that brought him into a battle with! The attack is being led by Alabama's KKK senator, Jefferson Beauregard Sessions and Vitter, each committed to discouraging minorities from voting, regardless of Rience Preibus' meaningless Autopsy report, which mentions that "By 2050, the Hispanic share of the U.S. population could be as high as 29 percent, up from 17 percent now” and that unless Republicans “get serious” about tackling their minority outreach problem, “we will lose future elections.” As Adam Serwer explained in Mother Jones last week, when Republican racists started attacking the prospect of Perez, "When Perez was nominated to head the Department of Justice's civil rights division, some congressional Republicans sought to block his confirmation over since discredited allegations regarding a voter intimidation case involving the New Black Panther Party and Perez's advocacy on behalf of undocumented immigrants. During the Bush years, the division had been marred by partisan politics and declining civil rights enforcement. But since Perez took the helm, the division has blocked partisan voting schemes, cracked down on police brutality, protected gay and lesbian students from harassment, sued anti-immigrant Arizona sheriff Joe Arpaio for racial profiling, stood up against Islamophobia, and forced the two largest fair-housing settlements in history from banks that discriminated against minority homeowners."

So while some Republicans are trying to change the GOP's anti-Hispanic image, the news is filled with Republican bigots and racists blocking a highly respected and highly qualified Hispanic nominee to a cabinet job. When Priebus was on CNN Monday, he criticized Mitt Romney for implying that the Republican Party wants Latinos to "self deport." He told Wolf Blitzer that "One of the issues that I think really cut pretty badly within the Hispanic communities [was] when Mitt Romney talked about self-deportation... "[I]t's a concept that really doesn't-- it's not our party's position. But it was something that I think hit every Hispanic kitchen table across America." But Priebus was wrong. It was official GOP policy, enshrined in their party platform by Priebus' RNC: "We will create humane procedures to encourage illegal aliens to return home voluntarily, while enforcing the law against those who overstay their visas... State efforts to reduce illegal immigration must be encouraged, not attacked."

The Republican ideal for a Secretary of Labor, of course, is a virulently anti-worker corporate shill like Miss McConnell's "wife," Elaine Chao, who spent her tenure getting personally wealthy by shipping American jobs to China. Obama has enough Wall Street-oriented crap in his cabinet already. I hope he and the Senate Democrats will not let the obstructionists and bigots in the GOP get away with blackballing Perez after the initial tumult does down.

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