I’d like to speak today about an old friend and mentor, Gene Scalia. Gene is a devoted husband and father, a brilliant lawyer, and a fair-minded advocate for workers and the rule of law-and he is an outstanding choice to be our next Secretary of Labor.
Gene has proven himself as a top legal mind, both in government and in private practice. During the presidency of George W. Bush he served as the top lawyer for the Department of Labor, where he stood up for workers by vigorously enforcing the law. When Enron’s executives defrauded and bankrupted the company for instance, Gene fought to recover the retirement savings of employees and pensioners.
In private practice, Gene fought out-of-control bureaucrats who threatened to undercut America’s position as an industrial power. When Washington bureaucrats tried to stop Boeing from building its world-class Dreamliner in South Carolina, he fended off the attack. As a result, thousands of South Carolinians today are employed in good-paying manufacturing jobs-and the world’s best airplanes continue to be made right here in America.
Gene’s resume tells his story well enough. It proves he’s a top expert in labor law who has devoted his life to ensuring that workers and industry alike get a fair shake.
But his resume doesn’t tell the whole story.
I met Gene early in my short career as a lawyer. He was one of my very first bosses, so I got a window into his leadership style and legal mind. I’ve relied on his hard-earned wisdom and counsel ever since.
Although I have to say, Gene was one of the only lawyers I knew who discouraged me from leaving the law and joining the Army. I think that’s less a commentary on my skills as a young lawyer and more a commentary on his need to keep his lawyers on his cases.
But he came around and introduced me to his brother Matt, who remains an Army officer to this day and the Scalia family has been good friends all along.
Gene Scalia is one of the most capable and decent men I know in Washington. His dedication to the law and its just application is absolute.
Working folks in this country deserve a Labor Secretary of such integrity and conviction and Gene Scalia will be just such a secretary.
I urge all my colleagues to confirm him as our next Secretary of Labor.
Original article source: http://www.cotton.senate.gov?p=blog&id=1217 | Article may or may not reflect the views of KLEK 102.5 FM or The Voice of Arkansas Minority Advocacy Council