World & Nation

Trump announces Labor secretary pick, Alexander Acosta, who would be only Latino in Cabinet

FILE: Trump To Tap Alexander Acosta As Labor Secretary Nominee
President Donald Trump nominated Alexander Acosta as the new Labor Secretary nominee on February 16, 2017.
(Joe Raedle /)

President Trump said Thursday that he will nominate former Justice Department official  R. Alexander Acosta as Labor secretary after his first pick, fast-food executive Andy Puzder, withdrew .

If confirmed, Acosta would be the only Latino in Trump’s Cabinet.

“He’ll be a tremendous secretary of Labor," Trump said at a news conference in the East Room of the WHite House, noting that Acosta was previously confirmed by the Senate three times.

Acosta was assistant attorney general for the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division under former President George W. Bush and also has served as U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Florida and as a member of the National Labor Relations Board.


Since 2009, Acosta has been dean of the law school at Florida International University in Miami.

Puzder, chief executive of Carpinteria-based CKE Restaurants Inc., parent company of Carl’s Jr and Hardee’s, withdrew the day before his Senate confirmation hearing after several Republicans opposed him because of a series of controversies, including admitting he had for years employed a housekeeper in the U.S. illegally and decades-old allegations of spousal abuse.

10 a.m.: This story was updated with comment from Trump.

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