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Bernie Sanders, Tom Perez to appear in Miami April 19

A date and time have been officially announced for the Florida appearance of Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez and Vermont independent Sen. Bernie Sanders.

The two will speak Wednesday, April 19, from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the James L. Knight Center in Miami.

To RSVP for the event, go here.

The two officials are scheduled to hold events in “red” and “purple” states, including Maine, Nebraska and Montana, in addition to Florida. The tour starts April 17 and lasts about one week.

“At a time of massive income and wealth inequality and a shrinking middle class, we need a government which represents all Americans, not just Wall Street, multinational corporations and the top 1 percent,” Sanders and Perez said in a joint statement. “Regardless of where they live or their political affiliations, most people understand that it is absurd for Republicans in Congress to support huge tax breaks for billionaires while pushing for cuts to Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.”

Sanders and Perez plan to advocate for raising the minimum wage to $15, investing in roads and bridges, making public colleges tuition-free and overhauling the immigration system.

Sanders had been an early backer of Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison, Perez’s main rival for the DNC job, and was initially critical of Democrats who called for Perez to enter the race.

“Running for chair, Tom said that his views were not substantially different than Keith Ellison’s, who I strongly supported,” Sanders told The Washington Post. “I’m sorry he did not win. But during that campaign, Tom said that the Democratic Party had to be refocused, had to be rebuilt, and I trust that he will keep those promises. The fact that he’s prepared to travel with me around the country and pick up half the cost of this is a positive sign.”

The weeklong tour is similar to other trips Perez and Ellison have taken together — including one to New Jersey, where Perez blasted Republicans for not giving a “s**t” about people.

Meanwhile, news of the tour is provoking the GOP to talk a little trash.

“Democrats are still in deep denial about the lack of enthusiasm voters have for their party and remain in disarray following harrowing losses across the country last November,” Republican National Committee spokeswoman Ellie Hockenbury said in a statement sent to FloridaPolitics. “The people of Florida have had enough of their political games. Democrats should join Republicans in working together to find real solutions to the important issues facing millions of Americans across the country. Unfortunately, this tour appears to be more about increasing the name recognition of a few Democrats than about making the American people a priority.”

Written By

Mitch Perry has been a reporter with Extensive Enterprises since November of 2014. Previously, he served five years as political editor of the alternative newsweekly Creative Loafing. Mitch also was assistant news director with WMNF 88.5 FM in Tampa from 2000-2009, and currently hosts MidPoint, a weekly talk show, on WMNF on Thursday afternoons. He began his reporting career at KPFA radio in Berkeley and is a San Francisco native who has lived in Tampa since 2000. Mitch can be reached at mitch.perry@floridapolitics.com.

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