Politics

Here’s why this 90’s Oprah episode was used as evidence against a Trump nominee

An episode of The Oprah Winfrey Show from 1990 was part of the case against President Donald Trump’s failed cabinet appointee this week.

Andy Puzder, Trump’s pick for Labor Secretary, plans to withdraw himself from the nomination this week following days of intense controversy surrounding Puzder’s personal and political history.

Puzder is a Republican fast-food mogul who faced fierce scrutiny over workplace abuse and domestic violence allegations. That’s where the Oprah video comes in – Puzder’s ex-wife reportedly appeared on the show in disguise. According to Politico:

The episode is called “High-Class Battered Women,” according to a source familiar with the matter. It aired in March, 1990. … Patty Murray (D-Wash.), the top Democrat on the HELP Committee that will vote on Puzder’s nomination, said she was “deeply troubled” by the video.

“It was important for us to know all of the information about any candidate that comes before us,” Murray said in an interview.

Last month POLITICO reported that Puzder’s former wife, Lisa Fierstein, appeared in disguise on Oprah to discuss her abuse allegations, which she has since retracted, most recently in a letter to the Senate HELP Committee.

The HELP Committee asked [Oprah Winfrey Network] for all episodes about domestic violence between 1985 and 1990, OWN said in a written statement, and OWN turned over 20 “for the committee members to review in confidence.” OWN “did not provide copies or transcript of the episodes and has not provided information about the identities of anyone who appeared,” it said.

Puzder is expected to drop out of consideration to be Labor Secretary, according to The Hill, after Republican leaders started voicing their opposition.

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