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In addition to the spousal abuse allegations, Puzder was set to face tough questions over the fact he employed an undocumented housekeeper for years as well as his controversial tenure as CEO of CKE Restaurants, the parent company of fast-food chains Hardee's and Carl's Jr.

Before his withdrawal, GOP leaders were urging the White house to pull the nomination when four Republicans said they would cast no votes and as many as 12 were ready to bolt, according to CNN.

Andy Puzder, Donald Trump's choice to head up the Department of Labor, has withdrawn his nomination for the position, as reported by the Associated Press and NBC News.

Puzder's exit comes less than two days after Trump's National Security Advisor Gen. Michael Flynn exited over his calls with Russian officials prior to the election.

Puzder's ex-wife, Lisa Fierstein, has since retracted her claims.

But he also said Trump's proposals to build a border wall, stiffen enforcement and defund cities that provide sanctuary to undocumented immigrants were reasonable.

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Preliminary commentary shared with PLANSPONSOR has suggested there is little reason to think Puzder will back away from his free-market philosophy during the hearings.

The move came as support evaporated among Republicans for the former fast-food executive.

Public and private sector unions, in decline before President Trump's surprise victory a year ago, had started 2017 with more body blows, with three states rushing through right-to-work legislation and the new president trying to widen the gulf between union members and their leadership.

Some conservatives have also taken issue with Puzder's immigration stance, saying it is at odds with Trump. Susan Collins - both of whom sit on the committee that had jurisdiction for Puzder's nomination - were top targets for Democrats, especially since they both also voted against Betsy DeVos, now the education secretary.

"No matter how you cut it, there is no worse pick for labor secretary than Andrew Puzder, and I'm encouraged my Republican colleagues are starting to agree", the New York Democrat said. In a statement, Puzder said that he ended her employment after he learned of her immigration status, and that he "offered her assistance in getting legal status", which she reportedly declined.

"Just desserts: @USDOL nominee Andrew Puzder lands in the fryolator".

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