NAACP?Supported Assistant U.S. Attorney General for Civil Rights Nominee Tom Perez Confirmed by U.S. Senate

72 -22 VOTE CONFIRMS NOMINEE WHO HAS THE COURAGE, COMMITMENT, SKILLS, AND VISION TO REPAIR AND LEAD THE CIVIL RIGHTS DIVISION

Earlier today, October 6, 2009, the United States Senate, by a margin of 72 yeas to 22 nays, voted to confirm Tom Perez to be the Assistant U.S. Attorney General for Civil Rights.

Tom Perez has a breadth and depth of experience in public service, civil rights, management, and leadership that make him an exceptional candidate for this post, and the NAACP strongly supported his nomination.  The mission of the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division is to ensure equal treatment and equal justice under the law by enforcing and defending the civil rights of all Americans in areas such as education, employment, housing, voting, criminal justice, and public accommodations among others.  Over the past 8 years, the civil rights division has been woefully misdirected, inactive, and has suffered from a high staff turn-over, combined with low morale.  As a result, the American people, and especially our nation’s racial and ethnic minority communities, are clearly facing a crisis in confidence as a result of the Divisions sketchy civil rights enforcement record.  Tom Perez is the right person at this time to work with Attorney General Eric Holder to rebuild not only the Civil Rights Division, but also our country’s reputation as a defender of the rights of all Americans to pursue the Constitutional promises of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

With experience in the executive and legislative branches at both the federal and state levels, Tom Perez has a proven track record in the area of civil rights enforcement, understands the issues he will face, is committed to securing and defending civil rights, and has the proven management abilities necessary to effectively restore integrity to the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division at this pivotal juncture.  He has worked in practice at the Civil Rights Division, where he began as a federal prosecutor in the Criminal Section, and rose to become its Deputy Chief.  In January 1998, Mr. Perez became Deputy Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights.  He is well versed in not only many of the issues facing the Civil Rights Division at this time, but he is also keenly aware of how the division should be operating, and the challenges he will face in the upcoming years.

See How Each Senator Voted »

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