food politics

Trump’s Secretary of Labor Pick Called Fast-Food Workers ‘the Best of the Worst’

His own workers are protesting his own nomination. Photo: Al Seib/LA Times via Getty Images

Donald Trump’s pick for secretary of Labor, Andy Puzder — the robot-loving CEO of Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s parent company, CKE Restaurants —is notoriously anti-labor. He’s advocated for replacing people with machines instead of paying them a livable wage, thinks Obamacare is bogus, and presided over chains with remarkably high sexual-harassment rates. (Carl’s Jr. has also produced a series of sexist burger ads.) His own workers at Carl’s Jr. have been revolting against him by protesting his nomination, with a 20-year employee of CKE calling him “not the person to protect American workers’ rights.”

Today, CNN Money revealed more evidence of his animosity toward workers. In a speech given at Westmont College in February 2011, CNN’s KFile reports, Puzder described fast-food workers as “the best of the worst” and “kind of the bottom of the pool.” Continuing, he said that “at Hardee’s it was so bad, we were hiring the worst of the worst.” Later that year at California State University, Puzder drove this point home again, saying fast-food companies “compete for the best of the worst.” In that same speech, he did admit that “nobody wanted to work at Hardee’s,” though it’s not clear that he’s thought about why that might be the case.

Trump’s Secretary of Labor Pick Disparaged Fast-Food Workers