Reveal • Will Evans
President Donald Trump’s nominee for labor secretary really doesn’t like minimum wage increases: He once spent $10,000 to oppose a pay bump of one dollar an hour.
Andrew Puzder, CEO of the company that franchises Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s restaurants, gave the money in 2006 to battle a Nevada ballot measure to raise the state minimum wage from $5.15 (the federal minimum wage at the time) to $6.15. The donation put him among the top 10 donors trying to prevent the wage increase, according to the National Institute on Money in State Politics.
Fast food companies and the National Restaurant Association outspent labor unions supporting the measure, but voters overwhelmingly approved the raise, with nearly 69 percent of the vote. As a result, Nevada’s wage is still one dollar above the federal one, at $8.25 per hour, today. Employers can pay a dollar less if they provide health benefits.