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Trump Nominates Alexander Acosta As Labor Secretary

16.02.17 20:08

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - A day after the withdrawal of his first choice, President Donald Trump announced on Thursday former U.

S. attorney Alexander Acosta will be his new nominee for Labor Secretary.

Acosta, who is currently dean of the Florida International University College of Law, previously served on the National Labor Relations Board, as assistant attorney general for the Civil Rights Division and as U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Florida.

"He's had a tremendous career," Trump said in remarks at the White House. "I think he'll be a tremendous secretary of labor."

Acosta, the son of Cuban-American parents, would be the first Hispanic member of Trump's Cabinet if confirmed.

Trump's announcement of his nomination of Acosta comes after fast food executive Andrew Puzder revealed Wednesday he was withdrawing from consideration to serve as Labor Secretary.

In a statement, Puzder said he made the decision to withdraw after careful consideration and discussions with his family.

"I am honored to have been considered by President Donald Trump to lead the Department of Labor and put America's workers and businesses back on a path to sustainable prosperity," Puzder said.

He added, "While I won't be serving in the administration, I fully support the president and his highly qualified team."

The news of Puzder's withdrawal came amid reports that a number of Republicans intended to vote against him.

Citing a senior GOP source, CNN reported that top Senate Republicans had been urging the White House to withdraw Puzder's nomination.

Puzder had been due to appear before the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee for a confirmation hearing on Thursday.

Democrats and labor groups were critical of Puzder's opposition to the Obama administration's proposal to expand overtime pay as well as his views on raising the minimum wage.

Puzder, who currently serves as CEO of CKE Restaurants, Inc., the parent of Carl's Jr. and Hardee's, also came under pressure amid revelations he once employed an undocumented immigrant as a housekeeper.

Additionally, Puzder's ex-wife accused him of physical abuse in a 1990 episode of "The Oprah Winfrey Show," although she has since retracted the allegations.

Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX



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