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Puzder

As may people have pointed out, Trump has seemed to nominate his cabinet based on loose facsimiles. For example, for the EPA, he nominated Scott Pruitt, who is actively trying to dismantle the agency. For Secretary of Education, he chose Betsy Devos, perhaps because she is a mother and to Donald, that is close enough to a teacher. And now he is nominating Andrew Puzder, the CEO of CKE Restaurants, which owns chain brands Hardee's and Carls Jr., for Labor Secretary. Puzder has many counts against him, including employing an undocumented worker, which CNN notes is "an admission that has sunk other cabinet secretary nominees." His restaurant ads typically feature scantily clad, sexualized young women stretching their mouths around hamburgers. Puzder has said, “I don't think there's anything wrong with a beautiful woman in a bikini, eating a burger and washing a Bentley or a pickup truck or being in a hot tub. I think there's probably nothing more American." And of course, these are these are the accolades which landed him a gig in the administration of our grab-them-by-the-pussy-president.

But now, right before his Senate confirmation — which has already been delayed four times — scandalous news, the kind that matches the reality TV ethos of this current administration, has revealed that Puzder's ex-wife, Lisa Fierstein "appeared in disguise on Oprah to discuss her abuse allegations," reports Politico.

The episode aired in 1990 and has since been the property of the Oprah Network. It has not been leaked or showed to the public, though the network did release it to Senators from both parties set to vote on Puzder's confirmation this week.

Eyes are on Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) and Susan Collins (R-Maine), who were the only Republicans to vote against Betsy DeVos and are, gasp, women, so should be more moved to anger by the footage, though one hopes that it does not take being a woman to condemn beating women. 

According to Politico, "Collins did not say whether the video swayed her...[she] inquired about making the video public but was told it was merely being provided so senators could come to their own decisions."

So far, the Oprah Network has not released the video to the public and has not provided comment. Puzder and Fierstein have been officially separated since 1986. A 1988 petition from Fierstein posted by Politico, "provides previously unreported details of the alleged abuse," stating Puzder "assaulted and battered [her] by striking her violently about the face, chest, back, shoulders, and neck, without provocation or cause," leaving “bruises and contusions to the chest, back, shoulders and neck” and “two ruptured discs and two bulging discs,” as well as other injuries.

According to Politico, in the Oprah video, Fierstein says that Puzder was careful where he hit her: "Most men who are in positions like that don't leave marks. The damage that I sustained you can't see. It's permanent....They don't hit you in the face. They're too smart. They don't hit you in front of everyone."

Additionally, according to Politico, Fierstein said that Puzder "vowed revenge" on her. According to Firestein, Puzder told her, “'I will see you in the gutter. This will never be over. You will pay for this."

Fierstein later retracted the allegations as part of a child custody agreement.

Let's hope the men on the GOP side of the Senate will recognize the barbarity of Puzder's character and vote against his nomination. 

Image via @seangduffy

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 Jen Pitt, originally from Brazil, is a Brooklyn based writer and performer. She covers feminism, arts, and Brazilian culture.


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