I think Jeff Stein gets it right. To summarize:
- This is not an ideological dispute. Both Ellison and Perez are solidly on the left of the party, and anyone who thinks Perez is a neoliberal is an ignoramus and/or a massive dumbshit. (Yes, yes, Perez nominally supported the TPP. But leaving aside the idiocy of defining a public official’s politics based on One True Issue — a process by which you can conclude that anyone is a heretic — all this means it that he was a member of the Obama administration. The Secretary of Labor doesn’t set trade policy.)
- Both would, at worst, figure to be massive improvements over Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, admittedly for a position many people seem to think is vastly more important than it is.
- There are two obvious points in Ellison’s favor for this particular job: his experience as an elected official and the fact that he’s already shown an ability to unify diverse factions within the party. Perez was an outstanding Secretary of Labor and should have been Clinton’s VP nominee, but I don’t see what he would bring to this particular job that would overcome those advantages.
- So while Perez would be good, Ellison seems like the best choice.
…and, now, the strongest reason for supporting Ellison:
Harvard Law professor Alan Dershowitz said Friday he’ll leave the Democratic Party if Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) is appointed the next chair of the Democratic National Committee (DNC).
“I’m going to tell you right here on this show, and this is news – if they appoint Keith Ellison to be chairman of the Democratic Party, I will resign my membership to the Democratic Party after 50 years of being a loyal Democrat,” Dershowitz told the Fox Business Network.