President Trump's labor secretary pick has withdrawn from consideration amid questions about his past, and it may have been a newly revealed Oprah interview that derailed the nomination.
As speculation grew, Andy Puzder, the CEO of Carl's Jr. and Hardee's parent company CKE Restaurants, multiple outlets reported Wednesday that he had thrown in the towel.
He confirmed the news in a tweet Wednesday afternoon.
I am withdrawing my nomination for Secretary of Labor. I'm honored to have been considered and am grateful to all who have supported me.— Andy Puzder (@AndyPuzder) February 15, 2017
His withdrawal came as a bombshell 1990 interview emerged, which featured Puzder's ex-wife, Lisa Fierstein, on The Oprah Winfrey Show in a segment entitled, "High Class Battered Women.”
Using the alias "Anne," she disguised her appearance with sunglasses and a wig. Her real name then was Lisa Henning.
She was on the show to discuss alleged spousal abuse she allegedly endured while married to Puzder.
She said: “The most frightening thing was leaving because once I made that break and once I made it public, and remember my ex-husband was a public figure — everyone knew him and knew what he was doing — and once I made that public, he vowed revenge. He said, ‘I will see you in the gutter. This will never be over. You will pay for this."
"Ann" never identified her husband as Puzder, who went on to become the multi-millionaire CEO of the fast food empire.
The Oprah appearance may have been publicly forgotten, but not by U.S. senators tasked with confirming Puzder as labor secretary.
A clean copy of the 27-year-old video was reportedly provided by OWN, Oprah's cable network.
"Most men who are in positions like that don't leave marks," Puzder's ex said as the music played during the credits. "The damage that I sustained you can't see. It's permanent. They don't hit you in the face — They're too smart."
Puzder has denied the abuse allegations that were made during the couple's 1989 divorce.
But in a bizarre twist, his ex-wife told Inside Edition that she is against the release of the video.
Now remarried and going by the name Lisa Fierstein, she said: "I am disgusted, hurt, angry and vehemently opposed to this unfair invasion of my personal life."
She retracted her claims of physical abuse in 1990, eight months after the Oprah appearance. She and Puzder are now on friendly terms.
"None of the events from so far in the past have anything to do with Andy’s kindness and generosity," she said.