Politics

Puzder Backs Out of Labor Secretary Nomination

Hardee’s and Carl’s Jr. head lacked confirmation votes

Andrew Puzder leaves a November meeting with Donald Trump in Bedminster Township, New Jersey. Trump later nominated Puzder to head the Labor Department though recent reports indicate that Puzder is expected to withdraw his nomination. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Andrew Puzder, President Donald Trump’s nominee for Labor secretary, backed out of the confirmation process Wednesday.

In a statement released by the CEO of CKE Restaurants, which runs the Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s chains, Puzder said he decided to withdraw his nomination after “careful consideration and discussions with [his] family.”

Puzder had been heavily criticized since being picked in December.

Among the critiques were allegations of domestic abuse, financial conflicts of interest, his employment of an undocumented immigrant, and worker complaints filed agains his company.

The Senate had pushed back his committee hearing repeatedly, most recently to Thursday, Feb. 16, when he was scheduled to face the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee at 10 a.m. The committee has yet to receive his opening statement, which is usually sent 24 hours in advance, according to a staffer for Washington Democratic Sen. Patty Murray, the ranking member on the committee.

 

At least a half-dozen Republican senators declined to support the fast-food CEO outright, saying they would wait to make a decision until after his hearing.

Emily Wilkins contributed to this report.

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