Moment ex-wife of Trump’s Labor secretary pick tells Oprah her husband ‘battered her and vowed revenge’ on 1990 show
- Andrew Puzder’s ex-wife Lisa Fierstein appeared on the Oprah Winfrey show in disguise as she accused him of domestic abuse in 1990
- The Carl’s Jr. CEO faces a Senate confirmation Thursday over Labor nomination
- Fierstein had claimed Puzder had abused her, but later withdrew the claims
- Senator Susan Collins of Maine says she has viewed video of the show and is among four GOP senators raising doubts about Puzder
- Puzder acknowledged having employed illegal immigrant for domestic work
This is the moment the ex-wife of Donald Trump‘s Labor secretary pick told Oprah back in 1990 that her former husband battered her and vowed revenge over domestic violence allegations.
The recently uncovered clip from the Oprah Winfrey show emerged as Andrew Puzder’s nomination to lead the Labor Department encountered Republican resistance ahead of his hearing on Thursday.
The Oprah episode titled ‘High Class Battered Women’, which was published by Politico on Tuesday, featured the Carl’s Jr. CEO’s ex-wife Lisa Fierstein revealing the claims of marital abuse.
Fierstein appeared on the show in disguise wearing sunglasses, a wig and using the name Ann as she claimed she called the police on Puzder as she spoke of the alleged abuse.
Andrew Puzder’s ex-wife Lisa Fierstein (above) appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show in 1990 when she revealed marital abuse allegations
Andrew Puzder’s nomination to be labor secretary is endangered, with four GOP senators expressing reservations
‘I wound up losing everything, everything. I have nothing. He has a Porsche and a Mercedes-Benz. He has the home. He has everything. He was an attorney and he knew how to play the system,’ she said on Oprah.
‘Most men who are in positions like that don’t leave marks. The damage that I sustained you can’t see. It’s permanent… They don’t hit you in the face. They’re too smart. They don’t hit you in front of everyone.’
The episode featured other women who were also allegedly abused by their husbands.
Puzder’s ex-wife first accused him of domestic abuse when they filed for divorce in 1989 in St. Louis, Missouri.
She later retracted the claims of abuse about eight months after appearing on Oprah during a 1990 child custody agreement.
Fierstein wrote a letter to the committee saying that she was hesitant to appear on the show, ‘but encouraged by friends and became caught up in the notion of a free trip to Chicago and being a champion of women and women’s issues. I regret my decision to appear on that show.’
Her divorce filings alleged Puzder attacked, choked and throwing his wife to the ground, The Riverfront Times reported in December.
She said Puzder: ‘hit me in the head, pushed his knees into my chest, twisted my arm and dragged me on the floor, threw me against a wall, tried to stop my call to 911 and kicked me in the lower back’.
Puzder denied the abuse allegations at the time and in a deposition for his divorce. He called the allegations ‘baseless’.
The episode featured other women who also alleged abuse at the hands of their husbands. Fierstein later retracted the claims about eight months after appearing on Oprah
Fierstein appeared on the show in disguise wearing sunglasses, a wig and using the name Ann
Cabinet nominee Andrew Puzder’s ex-wife appeared on the Oprah Winfrey (above) show in disguise to make claims of physical abuse
Although the tape’s existence was reported last month, a copy of the episode wasn’t previously known to have been located.
Senators on the HELP committee, which will hold Puzder’s hearing later this week, are said to be reviewing a copy of the Oprah episode behind closed doors.
Senator Susan Collins of Maine – who voted against Betsy DeVos to be Education Secretary – revealed this week she had viewed the episode containing claims of marital abuse.
‘I’m going to wait until the issues that have arisen are fully explored at his hearing,’ Collins told Capitol reporters, the Washington Post reported.
formation is of concern.
Others who are holding off support in the 52-48 Republican Senate are Georgia Senator Johnny Isakson, Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski – who also opposed DeVos, and South Carolina Senator Tim Scott.
All four have informed GOP leaders of their reservations, CNN reported. Collins spent time on the video. ‘I have gone to review the Oprah show for an hour on which his former wife appeared and I’m reviewing the other information that has come to light. I’m sure all of this will explored fully,’ she said.
Puzder’s nomination hit another bump when it was revealed he had employed a domestic worker who wasn’t here legally. He said he paid back taxes and let the worker go after he discovered their illegal status.
Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) says she has viewed videotape of Andrew Puzder’s ex-wife during her appearance on the Oprah Winfrey show
President of CKE Restaurants at a Carls Jr. Restaurant in Carpinteria with a turkey burger,
Protesters hold signs during a demonstration against U.S. Labor Secreatary nominee CKE CEO Andrew Puzder outside of the CKE Restaurants, Inc. headquarters on February 13, 2017 in Anaheim, California
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell gave a full-throated endorsement last week, telling reporters he backed the nomination ‘enthusiastically.’
Labor groups have also bashed Puzder for his company’s use of minimum wage labor. The firm, CKE Resaurants, includes Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s chain restaurants.
Carl’s Jr. became known for its racy TV ads featuring women in states of undress eating hamburgers.
D.C. interest groups like the Chamber of Commerce and the National Restaurant Association are using their muscle to try to push the nomination through.
Any Democrats who might think about backing Puzder are getting a preview of the base opposition he is encountering.
Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren sent him a 28-page letter on Monday, the LA Times reported.
‘My staff’s review of your 16-year tenure as CEO of CKE Restaurants, Inc….reveals that you’ve made your fortune by squeezing the very workers you’d be charged with protecting as Labor Secretary out of wages and benefits,’ she wrote.