CHN: President-elect Trump’s Cabinet Picks Continue to Alarm Advocates

As was mentioned in the December 6 Human Needs Report, human needs advocates have opposed several nominees to President-elect Trump’s cabinet, including his picks to head the Departments of Health and Human Services, Housing and Urban Development, and Education. Trump’s nominee for Secretary of Labor, CKE Restaurants CEO Andrew Puzder, is also causing concern among advocates.

The National Employment Law Project said in a statement that, “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: He opposes raising the minimum wage, threatens to replace restaurant workers with machines, has consistently opposed long-standing rules that protect workers and law-abiding employers, and demonstrated that he prizes corporate welfare and profits over workers’ well-being.” The National Women’s Law Center said Puzder “would have a devastating impact on women in the workplace.”

President-elect Donald Trump also nominated Rep. Mick Mulvaney (R-SC) to be the director of the Office of Management and Budget. A deficit hawk, Rep. Mulvaney is a co-founder of the ultra-conservative House Freedom Caucus and has introduced a number of bills aimed at cutting government spending, especially Medicare and Social Security. The OMB chief is instrumental in shaping and administering the federal budget and overseeing agency regulatory reform; OMB’s approval is needed for most regulations issued by agencies, and Mulvaney would also play a key role in repealing regulations implemented by the Obama Administration.

Many advocate groups also oppose the nomination of Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) to be Attorney General. The confirmation hearings for Sen. Sessions are currently scheduled to take place January 10-11 in the Senate Judiciary Committee; dates have not yet been announced for confirmation hearings for the other cabinet nominees. All nominees to the cabinet have to be confirmed by a simple majority of the Senate.

For information on what to expect in policy changes from the Trump Administration and the new Congress in 2017, see the December 6 Human Needs Report and CHN’s Washington 2017 resource webpage. For more information, view The New Congress: How it Plans to Cut…And How to Fight Back, a webinar originally held on December 16, and available here.

Budget and Appropriations
Labor and Employment