The Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee approved Alex Acosta yesterday to lead the U.S. Department of Labor (USDOL) in a 12-11 party line vote; the next step is a full vote on the Senate floor. No Democrats supported Acosta’s nomination, who is generally considered a more measured choice for the job compared to President Trump’s original pick – scandal-prone fast food mogul Andrew Puzder. Ranking Democrats during Acosta’s confirmation hearing were frustrated by his refusal to commit to fight for the silica rule and new overtime threshold created under President Obama. Acosta – who currently serves as dean of the law school at Florida International University in Miami and served in two other Senate-confirmed positions under President George W. Bush – cited the January executive order directing all department heads to freeze and review all regulations as his reason for avoiding the question.
More on yesterday’s vote via L.A. Times here.