MEMO: Eugene Scalia Is Too Extreme to Lead the Department of Labor

MEMORANDUM

Date: September 18th, 2019

To: Interested Parties

From: Derek Martin, Director, Allied Progress

Subject: Eugene Scalia Is Too Extreme To Lead The Department Of Labor

As the Senate considers President Trump’s nomination of Eugene Scalia as Secretary of Labor, Allied Progress hopes the committee will dutifully explore Scalia’s extreme views and lengthy track record as a staunch opponent of working families.

In advance of this hearing, Allied Progress Director Derek Martin said:

“Eugene Scalia is too extreme and too conflicted to serve as Secretary of Labor. His long career representing corporate America as they’ve fought their own workers, and his extreme views on subjects such as sexual harassment and workplace safety are disqualifying. This country deserves a Secretary of Labor who will stand up for ALL Americans in the workplace, not just the ones who sign the checks.”

KEY FACTS ON EUGENE SCALIA

  • Eugene Scalia seems to believe that sexual harassment isn’t a company problem. He actually wrotethat if “One supervisor orders his assistant to accompany him on a business trip and gropes her on the plane, at dinner, and in the hotel. A second supervisor does the same and tells her that’s what he did with her predecessors. … I believe the employer should not be liable in any of these scenarios unless it endorsed the conduct.” 
  • Eugene Scalia has represented a wide array of corporate behemothsas they’ve fought against their workers or worker rights generally, including: The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Ford Motor Company, UPS, Wynn Las Vegas and the National Association of Manufacturers.
  • Eugene Scalia represented Juul Labs on an amicus briefthat said imposing further safeguards on the e-cigarette industry would “endanger public health.”
  • Eugene Scalia derided the science behind OSHA’s ergonomics rule as “quackery” even though at the time, the US Center for Disease Control estimatedthat “musculoskeletal disorders account[ed] for nearly 70 million physician office visits in the United States annually.”
  • In 2014, Eugene Scalia opposed President Obama’s efforts to raise the minimum wage for federal workers, questioning Obama’s knowledge about “basic economics” and arguing he was “misusing” his authority.
  • Scalia claimedthat a proposed DOL rule requiring companies to disclose relationships with firms they hire to sway employees on union issues would “hobble” companies’ ability to respond to union organizing…

QUESTIONS EUGENE SCALIA MUST ANSWER

  • Does Eugene Scalia still believethat if a manager sexually assaults a subordinate, the company should only be liable if they explicitly endorsed the specific act?
  • Eugene Scalia wrote that, “The government does not have the sole–or even primary–role in furthering occupational safety and healthor compliance with the employment laws generally.” What role should government play in workplace safety? Should cost be a factor when it comes to keeping workers safe?
  • Eugene Scalia vehemently opposed President Obama’s effortto increase the minimum wage for federal workers via executive order, saying the legal basis for the move was “shaky.” Does Scalia believe we should have a federal minimum wage at all? What does he think an appropriate minimum wage would be?
  • The Trump administration has proposedallowing federal contractors to “discriminate against people who don’t share their employer’s religious views.” Does Eugene Scalia agree with the President’s proposal?
  • Does Eugene Scalia still believe that e-cigarettes, like those sold by Juul Labs and others, are good for public health as he argued in a legal brief?

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