Andrew Puzder withdraws from consideration as labor chief

President Trump's controversial pick for secretary of labor, fast food CEO Andrew Puzder, withdrew his nomination Wednesday after a week of scrutiny over decades-old abuse allegations from his ex-wife (since retracted).

"I think he'll be a tremendous secretary of Labor", he said, adding Acosta went through three successful Senate confirmation hearings in the past. If confirmed, Acosta would become the first Hispanic member of the president's cabinet. "Whether it was his distinguished service as USA attorney in Florida's Southern District or as dean of Florida International University's school of law, Alex has succeeded in all endeavors he has taken on, and managing the Department of Labor will be no different".

Acosta, 48, a Miami native, serves as dean of Florida International University Law School and was former U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida. While majority Republicans until this week had succeeded in confirming every nominee who came for a final vote, Puzder fell to a relentless series of attacks from Democrats, labor and other groups who opposed him on ideological and personal grounds.

Puzder, the chief executive officer of CKE Restaurants Inc, which primarily franchises fast-food chains including Hardee's and Carl's Jr, has been at the centre of a swirl of controversies, complaints and potential conflicts.

Puzder confirmed his withdrawal on Twitter.

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The report also shows that the government has started to seek waivers on environmental laws for building in some areas. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Speaker Paul Ryan estimated the costs at between $12 and $15 billion.

On Monday, news emerged via Politico that the Oprah Winfrey Network had provided Democratic and Republican senators with a 1990 episode of "Oprah" that featured Puzder's former wife, Lisa Fierstein.

A senior Republican source on Capitol Hill told NBC News, of the Puzder nomination, "It's dead".

On Feb. 15, Puzder announced that he was dropping himself from consideration for Labor Secretary.

Andrew's nomination was killed after he admitted to hiring an undocumented worker as a housekeeper, according to Slate, as the GOP viewed him weak on immigration. Of course, even in that instance, Puzder saw immigrants as people who were just happy to have a job, according to comments he made to an audience at an American Enterprise Institute breakfast.

  • Phil Peters