Andy Puzder: ‘Democrats Are The Opposition, The Media Is The Enemy’
President Donald Trump’s original choice to lead the Department of Labor, former CKE Restaurants CEO Andy Puzder, blasted the media Tuesday.
“The feeling is, among Republicans, while the Democrats are the opposition, the media is the enemy,” Puzder said on CNBC. The fast food magnate withdrew his name from consideration in mid-February after Senate Republicans informed the White House they didn’t possess the votes to confirm Puzder.
“You may not expect Democrats to be open minded and listening to what you say in this environment,” Puzder said. “But you do expect some neutrality from journalists, and people feel that they’re really not seeing that.”
Puzder was the focus of an intense campaign by union-backed protesters and Fight for $15 activists to block his nomination. He was criticized for hiring an illegal immigrant housekeeper with his wife, something he admitted to the public.
The former CEO of brands including Hardee’s and Carl’s Jr. faced intense criticism after Oprah Winfrey released a video from a 1990 episode of her show in which a woman described alleged abuse by Puzder and its impact on her life.
“I wound up losing everything, everything,” Lisa Fierstein said on the March 1990 episode of the Oprah Winfrey Show. Fierstein described in detail how he allegedly assaulted and battered her by striking her “violently about the face, chest, back, shoulders and neck.” But she has since retracted her allegations, saying that she only said what she said at the advice of her attorneys, and has since called Puzder “one of the finest men I have ever known.”
On Tuesday, Puzder explained that he could not respond to the attacks during his confirmation, to the point where he was not allowed on twitter. He said he would have liked to defend himself against accusations of wage violations and domestic abuse.
“It was tough, when I became the focus of the efforts to try and wipe somebody out, it became very intense,” Puzder said.
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