The disastrous line-up for the Trump junta just keeps getting worse and worse. Yesterday’s selection of fast food boss/reactionary plutocrat Andrew Puzder to head, of all things, the Department of Labor is the latest example. Reporter Deirdre Fulton has a nice, if depressing, summary of responses from worker advocates for the website Common Dreams that includes the following quote from Christine Owens, executive director of the National Employment Law Project:
“[B]ased on Mr. Puzder’s own comments, it’s hard to think of anyone less suited for the job of lifting up America’s forgotten workers—as Trump had campaigned on—than Puzder.”
Meanwhile, the good people at the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights blasted the pick in this withering statement:
“WASHINGTON – Wade Henderson, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, issued the following statement in response to news that President-elect Donald Trump intends to nominate the anti-family, anti-worker, and anti-jobs CEO of a fast food chain, Andy Puzder, to lead the Department of Labor:
‘Andy Puzder wants nothing more than to cut jobs, wages, and benefits. When he’s not defending himself from lawsuits from his employees, he’s advocating for replacing them with robots.
This man is an opponent of jobs that make America great and put food on the table. He opposes fair wages, he opposes overtime pay, he opposes sick days, and he opposes health care benefits—all of which have a great impact on working class families, communities of color, and women.
When the Department of Labor conducted an investigation of fast food restaurants, more than half of Puzder’s restaurants in the study were in violation of labor laws. This man is clearly unqualified to enforce these same laws.
You can be pro-business without being anti-worker. With this nomination, President-elect Trump is making clear that he doesn’t understand that difference.'”
The bottom line: if anyone had any illusions that Trump might actually follow some kind of populist, “mavericky” path, they are now fully dispelled. As a friend said to me last night, this is “Ted Cruz’s cabinet” we’re now seeing. Trump’s charade about being anti-establishment and pro-worker was clearly that — a charade. All caring and thinking people need to resist and fight back at every opportunity.