President Trump originally chose Andrew Puzder, the CEO of CKE Holdings, the parent company of Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s, as his nominee for Secretary of Labor. However, on February 15, 2017, one day prior to his much-delayed confirmation hearing, Mr. Puzder withdrew his name from consideration amidst reports that he would not receive the required Senate votes necessary for confirmation. Mr. Puzder’s nomination was knocked off track by allegations that he failed to pay workers overtime pay, hired an undocumented worker in his home, condoned sexual harassment, and opposed legislative efforts to address those problems. The next day, President Trump officially tapped former U.S. Attorney Alex Acosta for the position.
If confirmed as Labor Secretary, Mr. Acosta will oversee the federal apparatus that investigates violations of minimum wage, overtime and workplace safety laws and regulations. Mr. Acosta would also be the first Hispanic member of President Trump’s cabinet.
Mr. Acosta has a strong public service background. After graduating from Harvard Law School, he clerked for Judge (now Supreme Court Justice) Samuel Alito on the Third Circuit Court of Appeals. He has also served as a member of the National Labor Relations Board, head of the U.S. Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division (both of which he was appointed to by President George W. Bush), and U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida. Most recently, Mr. Acosta served as