State Assembly Speaker a dropout, not a UC Berkeley graduate

California Assembly Speaker John Perez’s educational record has recently come under scrutiny after years of biographies and reports have referred to the politician as a graduate of UC Berkeley when in actuality, he dropped out before graduating.

California Watch reported Thursday that before he was elected to the Assembly in 2008, his record went unchallenged for years, with numerous biographies stating he had, in fact, graduated from UC Berkeley. Perez was elected state Assembly Speaker in January of 2010 and was sworn in on March 1, 2010.

But in a statement, Perez said he acknowledges and takes full responsibility for the mistake and has made an effort to correct it.

“I attended but did not graduate. I take full responsibility for the initial mischaracterization that I graduated, and any other mischaracterizations about this that I or others may have made,” he said in the statement. “I take full responsibility for this mistake, and I regret it. I was surprised that these questions were raised because over the last several years as a candidate and legislator, I have worked to correct the record, but obviously I wasn’t diligent enough.”

Allie Bidwell is the news editor.