Another Side of Puzder
By Olivia Grady
On December 8, 2016, President Donald Trump nominated Andrew Puzder for Secretary of Labor. Since then, there has been a backlash, most particularly by unions, over his nomination.
For example, the president of the Service Employees International Union Mary Kay Henry criticized him in a statement on December 8th about the nomination:
"Throughout his career, Andrew Puzder has shown he does not believe in the dignity of all work and has used his position to line his own pockets at the expense of workers. In 2012, Puzder made $4.4 million, a full 291 times more than the average food worker. He doesn't support measures that would help families who work hard build a better life, such as the overtime rule, which would put more money in the pockets of millions of workers for the extra work they do. He wants machines to replace workers because robots ‘never take a vacation’ – even though robots can not ever replace the work that people do. He has stood with Republican congressional leaders who want to repeal the Affordable Care Act – even though his underpaid workers and millions of working Americans depend on it for healthcare.”
Critics have pointed out that Puzder does not support a $15 an hour minimum wage, Obamacare or the overtime rule.
The Wall Street Journal published an article on December 28, 2015, “Wages with Minimal Wiggle Boom,” by Andrew Puzder. In the article, he gives an explanation on why he doesn’t support a high minimum wage: “Instead of creating a living wage, the fight for dramatic minimum-wage increases could leave millions with no wage at all.”
On July 21, 2013, the Wall Street Journal published another article by Puzder titled “A CEO’s-Eye View of Obamacare.” He stated:
“Obamacare has caused millions of full-time jobs to become part-time, imposed a tax on lower-income workers who cannot afford it, forced millions of people out of insurance they liked, restricted access to doctors for millions of others, and created an enormous bureaucracy that discourages our doctors and nurses while suppressing health-care system innovation.”
On the overtime rule in a Wall Street Journal article called “Obama’s Overtime-Pay Boomerang,” he wrote:
“Unfortunately, the move would hurt the very managers [Obama] intends to help by turning them into hourly employees, depriving them of the benefits that come from moving into management. Overtime pay has to come from somewhere, most likely from reduced hours, reduced salaries or reduced bonuses.”
Puzder has been demonized by these quotes even though his focus seems to be on helping the workers, not CEOs.
Even more interesting is that in his personal and professional life, he has devoted time to helping those in need.
CKE Restaurants gives thousands of dollars in college scholarships, including $60,000 in 2017 alone, and helps with local charities, such as food banks.
In addition, on November 7, 2015, Puzder was recognized by Dream Foundation Executive Director Kisa Heyer for his work supporting terminally ill veterans. This was after CKE Restaurants named the Dream Foundation a beneficiary of CKE’s Stars for Heroes 2015 campaign.
Puzder explained why the Stars for Heroes campaign is so important:
Supporting our nation’s military heroes is part of our heritage at Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s and a proud tradition that’s close to our hearts, our franchisees and our customers who donate year after year. Last year we raised more than $1.1 million to support the crucial work of USA Cares, Dream Foundation and regional charities across the country, and this year, we hope to top that in a big way. As we celebrate Memorial Day and honor the service of our brave men and women in uniform, we invite everyone to stop by their neighborhood Carl’s Jr. or Hardee’s location, show their patriotism and donate.”
Puzder also personally donates to the Dream Foundation, as well as local and national charities. These charities include Cottage Hospital in Santa Barbara, Laguna Blanca School in Santa Barbara, a ministry to help AIDS-infected children in Cambodia, a mission to build an orphanage in the Congo and others.
Andrew Puzder is not the greedy CEO unions and far-left groups make him out to be. He saved a company and with that created thousands of jobs for those who need the money to support their families. In addition, he supports CKE’s charitable donations and gives personally to charity.
We need a man who knows how to create jobs in the Labor Department, not someone who is just going to line the pockets of union leaders. Puzder is the man for this job.