Politics

DNC's Perez: Trump's Speech Was 'Bannon On Steroids'

| by Ray Brown

Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez blasted President Donald Trump's Feb. 28 speech to Congress.

"This was Steve Bannon on steroids, with a smile," Perez told MSNBC, referring to Trump's chief strategist, who was also former executive editor of the right-wing Breitbart News, reported The Hill.

"It started out with alternative facts," Perez said of Trump's claim that he inherited a "mess" from former President Barack Obama.

"No, Obama inherited the Great Recession," Perez said.

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Perez also criticized Trump for "taking credit for things you had nothing to do with."

One of those things was taking credit for U.S. companies keeping jobs in the country, rather than shipping them overseas to China, India, Bangladesh or Mexico.

Perez, who served as labor secretary under Obama, and recently became the first Latino chairman of the Democratic National Committee, said Trump's speech had a great deal of "immigrant baiting" and promises he can't keep.

And repeating his earlier description of Trump's first speech to Congress, Perez said, "This was Steve Bannon on steroids, with a smile or two."

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Democratic Rep. Keith Ellison of Minnesota, who lost his bid to be DNC leader but was appointed as vice chair, appeared alongside Perez in the MSNBC interview in what appeared to be a show of unity among differing factions in the Democratic Party.

Perez was the "establishment favorite" in the DNC race, according to The New York Times, while Ellison was the pick among progressive party members who rallied behind Independent Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont in the 2016 Democratic primary.

Perez edged out Ellison in the DNC vote, in which mostly lobbyists and elite party members were able to cast a ballot.

But Ellison urged progressives who might have been disappointed by Perez's win to not leave the Democratic Party.

"I’d say there's a new spirit," Ellison said. "It’s a good time to get re-involved with the Democratic Party."

KRON published the statement  from Democratic House Minority Leader Rep. Nancy Pelosi of California, which she released in response to Trump's speech:

The President’s speech was utterly disconnected from the cruel reality of his conduct. The President speaks like a populist, but he is selling working people down the river to Wall Street.

He claims that he’s making America safer, but he has jeopardized the security of our country and weakened our fight against terror with his Administration’s dangerous, incompetent and unconstitutional actions.

The Trump Administration has spent 40 days putting Wall Street first, making America sick again, sowing fear in our communities, and ensuring Russia maintains its grip on our security and our democracy.  Democrats will continue to lead the fight against President Trump’s bait-and-switch assault on America.

Sources: MSNBC via The Hill, The New York Times, KRON / Photo credit: Gage Skidmore/Flickr

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