President Trump has picked one of late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia's five sons as his next secretary of labor. "I am pleased to announce that it is my intention to nominate Gene Scalia as the new Secretary of Labor," the president tweeted Thursday night. "Gene has led a life of great success in the legal and labor field and is highly respected not only as a lawyer, but as a lawyer with great experience working with labor and everyone else." Eugene Scalia, 55, served as Solicitor of the Labor Department in the George W. Bush administration from 2002 to 2003, and is currently a partner at the law firm Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, the Hill reports. If confirmed, he will replace Alexander Acosta, who resigned over his role in Jeffrey Epstein's 2008 plea deal.
Scalia cemented a reputation as a "free-market conservative and union antagonist" with his opposition to the Clinton administration's "ergonomics rule," introduced to protect workers from repetitive strain injuries, the New York Times reports. He also represented Walmart in a 2006 case in Maryland that would have required large employers to either spend more on employee healthcare or pay into a state Medicaid fund. Democratic Sen. Chuck Schumer criticized the choice Thursday night. Trump "has again chosen someone who has proven to put corporate interests over those of worker rights," the Senate minority leader said. "Workers and union members who believed candidate Trump when he campaigned as pro-worker should feel betrayed." (Read more labor secretary stories.)