Capitol Correspondence - 02.17.17

Pudzer Withdraws as DOL Secretary Nominee, Acosta Tapped for Position

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Amid a flurry of controversy over alleged spousal abuse, as well as questions regarding his hiring of undocumented workers, Andrew Pudzer withdrew himself from consideration for the cabinet position of Secretary of Labor. It has been widely reported that the withdrawal came due to eroding support from Republicans that would not give him the votes needed for confirmation. Democrats expressed concern over Pudzer’s history of opposing minimum wage increases and other key worker’s rights issues, and allegations of labor law violations in his role as the CEO of CKE Restaurants, a prominent fast food corporation.  
On February 16, President Trump held a press conference during which he named Alexander Acosta as his replacement pick to lead the Department of Labor (DOL). Acosta has a long history of public service, having served on the National Labor Relations Board as well as assistant attorney general in the Department of Justice’s (DOJ’s) Civil Rights Division under President George W. Bush. He also served as a law clerk to Justice Alito when he was a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third District. More recently Acosta was in private practice at Kirkland & Ellis, and he is currently the dean of Florida International University College of Law.