WASHINGTON (AP) — The abrupt withdrawal of the nomination of President Donald Trump’s pick for labor secretary brought swift blame from press secretary Sean Spicer, who said Democrats had “a double standard” for his party’s president and former President Barack Obama.
But it was only the Republicans who had the power to kill the nomination of fast-food executive Andrew Puzder. A look at the reality:
SPICER: “Where is the role of Senate Democrats in this?” he asked reporters at the White House. “There is no focus on these guys having a double standard for which they had with Obama nominees. It’s just ridiculous. He was not given a hearing.”
THE FACTS: Senate Democrats indeed disapproved of Puzder, as they have most of Trump’s other nominees. But it was the majority Republicans who did him in.
At least half a dozen GOP members had made it clear to the White House that they couldn’t vote for him, largely because he had employed and long neglected to pay taxes for a housekeeper who was working in the country illegally – a big failing in the eyes of their tough-on-immigration party.
The GOP leadership had scheduled a hearing Thursday for Puzder, but the party pulled the plug on it to head off what would have been a distasteful vote for many of its members.
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Associated Press writer Ken Thomas contributed to this report.