WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on Eugene Scalia, President Donald Trump’s pick to lead the Labor Department (all times local):
President Donald Trump’s pick to lead the Labor Department tells a Senate committee that his years of work as an attorney for corporate clients won’t influence his actions as a senior government official.
In opening remarks Thursday to the Republican-led Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, Eugene Scalia (skuh-LEE’-uh) recalled his previous service as the Labor Department’s top lawyer during the George W. Bush administration. Then, as now, Scalia says he was coming to the department from the private sector, where he advised and represented businesses on employment matters.
Scalia says once at the Labor Department he “had new clients, new responsibilities and a public trust.”
Scalia’s nomination is opposed by the AFL-CIO. The labor federation has described him as a union-busting lawyer who has eroded labor rights and consumer protections.
President Donald Trump’s nominee to run the Labor Department faces a Senate confirmation hearing Thursday, even as Democrats argue they haven’t had enough time to scour his record of legal work for corporate interests.
Although Trump tweeted in mid-July that Eugene Scalia was his, the committee didn’t officially receive the nomination until Sept. 11. The Republican-led Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee panel has set a vote on the nomination early next week.
Democrats say that won’t allow them to properly investigate Scalia’s work history. But Republicans counter that his required paperwork has been available since late August.
Scalia was the Labor Department’s top lawyer during the George W. Bush administration. As an attorney, he’s run up a string of legal victories on behalf of business interests.