Solis Confirmed as Labor Secretary
Updated 5:50 p.m.
By Michael A. Fletcher
The Senate this afternoon confirmed Rep. Hilda Solis (D-Calif.) as labor secretary, more than two months after she was nominated for the post by President Obama.
The Senate voted 80 to 17 to confirm Solis, after Senate Republicans today assured Democrats that they would not filibuster the nomination. Solis had come under fire from Senate Republicans, who thought she was unresponsive to many of their questions during her confirmation hearing, a situation that was compounded by her work as treasurer for American Rights at Work, a pro-labor group.
There were also concerns among some Republicans about her support for a measure that would make it easier for workers to organize unions.
Consideration of Solis's nomination was further delayed when it was revealed that her husband had recently paid about $6,400 to settle tax liens against his California auto repair business.
While Solis's nomination generated skepticism among many Republicans and their backers in the business community, the new labor secretary enjoys solid support among members of organized labor. The daughter of immigrants from Mexico and Nicaragua, both of Solis's parents were union members. Also, as a member of Congress, Solis has shared union skepticism toward free trade agreements, and been a strong proponent of developing jobs in renewal energy and other "green collar" areas.
"America's working men and women will be fortunate to have someone of Hilda's tremendous talents leading the Department of Labor. She knows the huge challenges facing workers and their families, and she has the experience and dedication needed for this vital position," said Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass.), chairman of the Senate's Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions. " It's been a privilege to work with her in Congress, and I look forward very much to working with her as secretary."
Labor leaders applauded Solis's confirmation.
"The confirmation of Rep. Hilda Solis is a huge victory. Finally, Americans will have a Secretary of Labor who represents working people, not wealthy CEOs," said AFL-CIO President John Sweeney.
"This is a proud moment," added Andrew Stern, president of the Service Employees International Union. "That a child of immigrants who went to a public university could now be a member of the president's Cabinet speaks incredibly highly of our country."
Posted at 5:27 PM ET on Feb 24, 2009
Share This: Technorati | Tag in Del.icio.us | Digg This
Previous: Sebelius Record Raises Operation Rescue Ire | Next: Smoke-Filled Hallways Don't Phase Senators
Please email us to report offensive comments.
Posted by: gm467 | February 25, 2009 6:15 PM
Posted by: TheBabeNemo | February 25, 2009 3:08 PM
Posted by: jameschirico | February 25, 2009 2:55 PM
Posted by: TheBabeNemo | February 25, 2009 2:53 PM
Posted by: TheBabeNemo | February 25, 2009 2:40 PM
Posted by: LoonyLeft | February 25, 2009 12:49 PM
Posted by: phoenixresearch | February 24, 2009 8:51 PM
Posted by: krankyman | February 24, 2009 8:32 PM
Posted by: MorganaLeFay | February 24, 2009 8:18 PM
Posted by: BurgundyAndGold | February 24, 2009 8:09 PM
Posted by: losthorizon10 | February 24, 2009 7:59 PM
Posted by: dotellen | February 24, 2009 7:12 PM
Posted by: truth1 | February 24, 2009 7:02 PM
Posted by: TOMHERE | February 24, 2009 6:41 PM
Posted by: dcstranger | February 24, 2009 6:20 PM
Posted by: Bubbette1 | February 24, 2009 6:20 PM
Posted by: infinity555 | February 24, 2009 6:06 PM
Posted by: reporter1 | February 24, 2009 6:05 PM
Posted by: HernandezUSA | February 24, 2009 5:59 PM
Posted by: LoonyLeft | February 24, 2009 5:56 PM
Posted by: djett1 | February 24, 2009 5:51 PM
Posted by: bbbsrus | February 24, 2009 5:03 PM
Posted by: Curmudgeon10 | February 24, 2009 4:56 PM
Posted by: sprayadhesive | February 24, 2009 4:54 PM
Posted by: menopausequeen | February 24, 2009 4:29 PM
Posted by: Tupac_Goldstein | February 24, 2009 4:27 PM
Posted by: catinhat83510496 | February 24, 2009 4:26 PM
Posted by: DCAtty | February 24, 2009 4:09 PM
Posted by: RightWinger9 | February 24, 2009 4:07 PM
Posted by: phoenixresearch | February 24, 2009 1:18 PM
Posted by: profyle424 | February 24, 2009 12:33 PM
Posted by: sandynh | February 24, 2009 12:23 PM
Posted by: ahashburn | February 24, 2009 12:15 PM
Posted by: Henry_of_BrowardCounty | February 24, 2009 12:13 PM
The comments to this entry are closed.