While Su was expected to be the favorite for the labor secretary position, several other names were floated to replace Walsh, including Association of Flight Attendants-CWA President Sara Nelson. Walsh is expected to exit the Biden administration in mid-March for a job with the NHL Players Association.
Su has served as deputy secretary of labor since she was confirmed in July 2021. Prior to joining the Biden administration, Su was secretary of the California Labor and Workforce Development Agency and spent more than a decade as an attorney with the Asian Pacific American Legal Center.
Her reputation as a fierce workers’ rights advocate and strict enforcer of labor law has drawn endorsements from unions and immigration advocacy groups. Her past work is also expected to prompt opposition to her nomination from Republicans and members of the business community.
Su likely has enough support to be confirmed to the position with the slight Democratic majority in the Senate, however. The Federal Vacancies Reform Act would also allow Su to serve as acting secretary while she goes through the confirmation process.
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