Democratic National Committee chair Tom Perez on Sunday responded to 2020 candidate Joe Biden’s anti-busing record by saying that voters should look at the “totality” of the party’s support for civil rights.
“Fox News Sunday” host Chris Wallace showed Perez that despite Biden denying that he ever opposed “voluntary busing,” the former Delaware senator had pushed anti-busing measures several times while serving in Congress.
When Wallace asked Perez if the Democratic Party was likely to nominate a candidate who has a history of opposing a major path to integration, the party chair said that it’s “going to be up to the voters.”
“And they’re going to look at the totality of everybody’s record and what they’ve said, what they have done and who was fighting for them,” Perez said. “And on all of these issues, whether it’s the economy, whether it’s civil rights, every Democrat has the backs of people and that’s what I think voters are going to see.”
“Does it bother you personally that Joe Biden opposed the main tool to desegregate schools?” Wallace asked.
“It’s up to the vice president to explain his position,” Perez responded. “It’s up to the vice president to explain everything he’s done up in his career.”
The DNC chair added that he invites voters to “kick the tires on all of our candidates” because at the end of the day, the difference between the Democratic candidates and President Donald Trump on civil rights issues is “night and day.”
It was Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) during the Democratic primary debates who drew the nation’s attention to Biden’s anti-busing record. During a heated exchange between the two Democrats, Harris scorched Biden for not only making nice with hardline segregationists in Congress, but also working with them to oppose busing.
Watch Perez below:
DNC chair Tom Perez on Biden's anti-busing stance: "It's up to the vice president to explain his position," but you have to look at the "totality" of the Democratic Party's record supporting civil rights pic.twitter.com/2w8wtdTBQl
— TPM Livewire (@TPMLiveWire) June 30, 2019