Four GOP senators are refusing to say whether they’ll vote to confirm Andrew Puzder, President Trump’s Labor secretary pick, amid revelations that he once employed an undocumented worker, CNN reported Tuesday.
Sen. Collins, Murkowski, Scott and Isakson all withholding judgment on Puzder's nomination after he revealed he hired undocumented immigrant— Manu Raju (@mkraju) February 7, 2017
Sens. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Uber - Biden makes his pitch as tax questions mount Emanuel defends handling of Chicago police shooting amid opposition to nomination Emanuel to take hot seat in Senate confirmation hearing MORE (Maine), Johnny IsaksonJohnny IsaksonHerschel Walker calls off fundraiser with woman who had swastika in Twitter profile Georgia reporter says state will 'continue to be a premier battleground' Critical race theory becomes focus of midterms MORE (Ga.), Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiHouse passes bill to expand workplace protections for nursing mothers Democrats look for plan B on filibuster Senate will vote on John Lewis voting bill as soon as next week MORE (Alaska) and Tim ScottTimothy (Tim) Eugene ScottTim Scott takes in .3 million in third quarter Nikki Haley gets lifetime post on Clemson Board of Trustees First senator formally endorses Bass in LA mayoral bid MORE (S.C.) are withholding judgement on Puzder, making it unclear whether he will get the 51 votes necessary for confirmation.
The senators’ silence on Puzder could be a sign that the fast food executive’s nomination is in jeopardy before it even leaves the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee.
Democrats on the committee are poised to vote against Puzder’s nomination.
The senators’ refusal to weigh in on Puzder came a day after the CKE Restaurants CEO admitted to once employing an undocumented immigrant as a housekeeper.
“My wife and I employed a housekeeper for a few years, during which I was unaware that she was not legally permitted to work in the U.S.,” Puzder said in a statement.
“When I learned of her status, we immediately ended her employment and offered her assistance in getting legal status. We have fully paid back taxes to the IRS and the State of California and submitted all required paperwork.”
In the wake of that revelation, HELP Committee Chairman Lamar AlexanderLamar AlexanderMcConnell gets GOP wake-up call The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Alibaba - Democrats return to disappointment on immigration Authorities link ex-Tennessee governor to killing of Jimmy Hoffa associate MORE (R-Tenn.) said on Monday that it did not disqualify Puzder, because he reported and corrected the issue.
Still, similar admissions have taken Cabinet nominees out of the running before. Two of former President Bill ClintonWilliam (Bill) Jefferson ClintonBill Clinton shares video update after release from hospital Biden, Democrats risk everything unless they follow the Clinton pivot (they won't) Giuliani picks Abe Lincoln filter for attack against McAuliffe MORE’s attorney general nominees, for example, had to withdraw from consideration after revelations that they had hired undocumented workers.
Puzder’s nomination has, so far, been riddled with controversy surrounding his positions on issues such as overtime pay and sick leave for workers. His confirmation hearing has also been delayed four times, most recently last week, as Puzder works to resolve conflicts of interest related to CKE Restaurants.