Rep. Pocan, House Democrats Voice Opposition to Trump’s Nominee for Secretary of Labor Andy Puzder
Washington, D.C. – U.S. Rep. Mark Pocan (D-WI) along with Democratic Chairman Joe Crowley (D-NY), Rep. Bobby Scott (D-VA), Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), and Rep. Mark DeSaulnier (D-CA) released the following statements after holding a press conference voicing opposition to President Trump’s Secretary of Labor nominee, Andy Puzder. Andy Puzder has made a name for himself by peddling the idea that minimum wage hikes would force fast food companies to replace workers with robots and has consistently opposed attempts to raise wages for individuals living below the poverty line.
“Andy Puzder has consistently stood on the side of big business and failed to support workers,” Rep. Mark Pocan said. “Since 2004, the Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division found Puzder’s businesses committed over 1,000 violations. Being Secretary of Labor is about making sure working men and women of this country are treated with decency. The nomination of Andy Puzder is another broken promise to the American people. President Trump likes to talk and tweet about putting hard-working Americans first, but at the end of the day, he wants to make sure only big business and special interests have seats at the table.”
“Andy Puzder is exactly the opposite of who we want running the Department of Labor,” Congressman Joe Crowley said. “There is no doubt in my mind that as Labor Secretary, he would consistently back the interests of corporations above the interests of working families. I’ve long fought for a higher minimum wage and better protections for working Americans – the very things Andy Puzder has made a career working against. American working families need better than Andy Puzder."
“The American people deserve a Secretary of Labor who can be counted on to enforce wage and hour laws, workplace safety protections, and workers’ civil rights,” said Congressman Bobby Scott. “In light of Mr. Puzder’s record, he has failed to carry the burden of proving that he will vigorously and effectively enforce the very laws his company has been found to violate. Therefore, the Senate HELP Committee has no choice but to reject his nomination.”
“President Trump promised to serve the American worker in his inaugural address, yet in nominating Mr. Puzder to lead the Department of Labor, the American worker would be betrayed. Mr. Puzder has an extensive record of engaging in marketing tactics that degrade women, fighting against paying workers their hard earned overtime, opposing expansion of the Affordable Care Act, and even allegedly failing to pay some of his workers,” said Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro. “Mr. Puzder is the wrong choice to lead the Department of Labor and the Senate should not confirm him.”
“Of all the cruel jokes played by President Trump on the working people who voted for him, the nomination of Andrew Puzder as Secretary of Labor is the cruelest yet,” said Congressman DeSaulnier. “Mr. Puzder has a proven record of exploiting his employees by making 487 times more than his lowest wage worker while refusing to pay a living wage; withholding overtime pay; favoring automation over working people; and running a chain of restaurants where 60 percent of the establishments where found to be in violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act. These actions should automatically disqualify Mr. Puzder from running the Department of Labor. So much for helping the 150 million working families that depend on the Department to protect them.”
“Working people need a champion at the Labor Department,” said AFL-CIO Executive Vice President Tefere Gebre. “At best, Andy Puzder is an adversary. At worst, he is an enemy. We simply cannot afford to have a Labor Secretary who does not respect workers. We are opposing his nomination with the full weight of the labor movement.”
A live stream of the press conference can be found here.