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Senate Confirms Thomas Perez for Labor Secretary

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July 19, 2013

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Senate Confirms Thomas Perez for Labor Secretary

Yesterday, the Senate approved, on a party-line vote of 54-46, the confirmation of Thomas Perez as the next secretary of labor. Prior to being nominated by President Obama for the top job at the Department Labor, Perez served as assistant attorney general for civil rights at the Department of Justice. He will fill the vacancy left by former-Secretary Hilda Solis who announced her departure in January after four years in the Obama Cabinet.

The Department of Labor is responsible for overseeing many federal employment and training initiatives, including programs authorized under the Workforce Investment Act (WIA). Additionally, the Trade Adjustment Assistance program, Registered Apprenticeship system, Job Corps and Employment Service Grant program fall under the department’s jurisdiction.

President Obama heralded Perez’s confirmation on Thursday after the vote to approve the nominee was held up in the Senate for several months. "Tom has lived the American dream himself, and has dedicated his career to keeping it within reach for hardworking families across the country,” said Obama. “At the Department of Labor, Tom will help us continue to grow our economy, help businesses create jobs, make sure workers have the skills those jobs require, and ensure safe workplaces and economic opportunity for all.”

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