Dem senator: Trump’s secretary pick ‘a big middle finger’ to Labor

Sen. Chris MurphyChristopher (Chris) Scott MurphySenate approves waiver for Biden's Pentagon nominee Democrats shoot down McConnell's filibuster gambit Senate confirms Biden's intel chief, giving him first Cabinet official MORE (D-Conn.) says President-elect Donald TrumpDonald TrumpIran's leader vows 'revenge,' posting an image resembling Trump Former Sanders spokesperson: Biden 'backing away' from 'populist offerings' Justice Dept. to probe sudden departure of US attorney in Atlanta after Trump criticism MORE’s pick for Labor secretary is the exact opposite of who should take the role.

“Donald Trump has kind of given a big middle finger to that entire department by nominating somebody who was found to have 50 percent of his restaurants in non-compliance with labor laws,” Murphy said of Andy Puzder on MSNBC’s “Andrea Mitchell Reports” Friday. "This is the guy who has essentially been a labor law scofflaw for most of his career and now you’re going to put him in charge of enforcing the very laws he flouted.


“This is somebody who opposes the minimum wage, who wants to end healthcare for 20 million workers, whose own restaurants have been consistently found in violation of federal law and sort of has a general contempt for the whole idea of people working," Murphy added of the CKE Restaurants CEO.

Trump formally tapped Puzder, who leads the parent company of burger chains Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s, as his desired Labor secretary Thursday.

Murphy vowed he would steadfastly oppose Puzder’s confirmation, adding some Republicans may do the same when confronted with the businessman’s record.

“I don’t have an open mind,” he said. "I mean, everything I’ve learned about him suggests that he really is the exact opposite of the kind of person you’d want at the Department of Labor.

“I think, for me, all my questions have already been answered. So I can’t imagine anybody less qualified for this position and I think a lot of Republicans are going to be asking tough questions at these hearings.”

Puzder has been a vocal opponent of President Obama’s controversial rule expanding overtime pay to about 4 million Americans.

The rule, on hold after a Texas court order, mandates companies pay overtime to most salaried workers who earn less than $47,476 annually.