20 Democrats Who Could Run for President in 2020

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WASHINGTON, DC – JUNE 29: U.S. Department of Labor Secretary Thomas Perez delivers remarks during a public meeting of the Financial Literacy and Education Commission at the United States Treasury on June 29, 2016 in Washington, DC. The agenda focused on financial education and investment advice, as well as the intersection of financial education and legal aid. (Photo by Pete Marovich/Getty Images)

14. Thomas Perez

In just a few weeks, Thomas Perez will leave his position as Secretary of Labor. He has already announced his candidacy for chairperson of the Democratic National Committee which will be decided in February 2017. The odds seem in favor of his opponent, Minnesota Representative Keith Ellison, which would leave room on Perez’s calendar to run for President in 2020.

Born to first-generation Dominican immigrants, Thomas Perez entered American politics via the judicial system. He has a strong background in civil rights law and served as Deputy Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights under Attorney General Janet Reno. During Bill Clinton’s administration, Perez was appointed Director of the Office of Civil Rights at the Department of Health and Human Services. Once he left that office, he worked in politics at the county and state levels, going from county council leader to Maryland’s Secretary of Labor. In 2009, he became the nation’s Assistant Attorney General.

During his career, Perez has fought for students facing discrimination, and he has investigated discrimination allegations against police departments. He has also been a leader in the fight for voting rights, particularly when it comes to discriminatory voter ID laws. Perez has a stellar resume in civil rights as well as the support of numerous labor unions. And, like others on the list, he was also considered for the VP slot on Clinton’s 2016 ticket.