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Westlake Legal Group > Appointments and Executive Changes

Hunter Biden to Leave Chinese Company Board, Addressing Appearance of Conflict

Westlake Legal Group 13xp-bidenchina-facebookJumbo Hunter Biden to Leave Chinese Company Board, Addressing Appearance of Conflict Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Presidential Election of 2020 Boards of Directors Biden, Joseph R Jr Biden, Hunter Appointments and Executive Changes

ALTOONA, Iowa — Hunter Biden, whose overseas business dealings have drawn relentless attacks from President Trump and posed a threat to the candidacy of his father, Joseph R. Biden Jr., intends to step down from the board of a Chinese company, BHR, by the end of the month, his lawyer said in a statement on Sunday.

The statement also said that if Mr. Biden were to be elected president, his son would “agree not to serve on boards of, or work on behalf of, foreign-owned companies.”

The decision is the first action the pro-Biden camp has taken that appears to acknowledge the extent to which Hunter Biden’s business practices have created an untenable problem for his father’s 2020 campaign. With the fourth Democratic primary debate only two days away, political strategists said Hunter Biden’s decision to leave the Chinese company could help defuse the issue at a time when some of Mr. Biden’s lower-polling Democratic rivals have suggested his son’s work overseas raises questions about conflict of interest.

“Hunter’s decision won’t stop Trump from spreading debunked conspiracy theories about the past,” said David Axelrod, President Barack Obama’s former chief strategist. “But it does give Joe Biden an answer he didn’t have about potential conflicts of interest moving forward.”

There is no evidence Mr. Biden acted improperly to aid his son’s overseas financial dealings in China and Ukraine. Still, many on the Biden team have been gravely concerned about Mr. Trump’s ability to inflict damage with a barrage of baseless claims of corruption against the Biden family, some of which were included in an expansive pro-Trump advertising campaign.

Mr. Biden has consistently ranked as one of the Democratic Party’s leading presidential candidates. But his advantage has slipped in some recent polls, and his fund-raising has lagged his top rivals. Over the last two weeks he has begun to vigorously fight back against Mr. Trump’s criticisms and last week, in a fiery address in New Hampshire, he called for the first time for Mr. Trump to be impeached.

“You go to three foreign governments, not just all about me — three foreign governments, and ask them to come in and interfere in the sovereignty, the sacredness of the American electoral process?” Mr. Biden said Sunday at a union gathering in Altoona, apparently alluding to Mr. Trump’s dealings with Russia, as well as with Ukraine and China. “Come on. Come on. This is outrageous. If in fact the House doesn’t move, let the facts fall where they may, then what does the next unethical president, if we elect one, what does that say they can do?”

The statement on Sunday from Hunter Biden’s lawyer, George Mesires, said his client had served only as a member of the board of directors of BHR, an equity investment fund manager, “which he joined based on his interest in seeking ways to bring Chinese capital to international markets.” It was an unpaid position. Mr. Mesires has previously said Hunter Biden became an investor in 2017, taking a 10 percent stake in BHR.

Mr. Trump has said with no evidence that Mr. Biden’s son used political ties to induce China to invest $1.5 billion in a fund he was involved in, an assertion Mr. Biden has denied.

The statement had been in the works for weeks, one Biden adviser said. Separately, a person familiar with the decision said it came at Hunter Biden’s initiative, not his father’s.

Mr. Trump has directed his broadsides against Hunter Biden as he faces an impeachment inquiry in the House, which was spurred by the president’s phone call to the president of Ukraine urging the government to investigate Hunter Biden’s financial dealings there. Subsequently, Mr. Trump publicly called for China to look into Hunter Biden’s financial dealings in that country.

Aides say Mr. Biden has been bracing for weeks for questions about his son at Tuesday’s CNN/New York Times debate. His allies and advisers say that any Democrat who broaches the subject is playing into Mr. Trump’s hands and hurting the party’s cause, and some have suggested Mr. Biden is prepared to make that case if he faces personal attacks, though several of his more prominent opponents have so far been careful to avoid criticizing Mr. Biden’s family.

Still, the national focus on Mr. Biden’s family has become a political vulnerability, some Democrats say, moving him off his campaign message and forcing him to play defense as he faces questions about conflicts of interest.

“It becomes a distraction, and that’s what hurt Hillary Clinton in 2016,” said Bret Nilles, the Democratic Party chairman in Linn County, Iowa, alluding to the scrutiny of Mrs. Clinton’s email practices while she was secretary of state.

The Biden campaign’s strategy has been to push back firmly on Mr. Trump’s claims, and to argue that the president is attacking Mr. Biden because he is concerned about running against him in a general election.

“They can also say, for Democrats who are nervous about it, ‘Hunter’s taken a step to say he won’t be on these boards if the vice president is elected president,’ and they could say, ‘We’ve addressed it and it’s time to move on,’” said Jennifer Palmieri, who was Mrs. Clinton’s communications director in the 2016 presidential campaign. “There are these campaign rituals you have to go through when your campaign does hit a perilous patch like this in order to signal to the press you’re handling it right, and to reassure supporters.”

At the union gathering here on Sunday, Mr. Biden began his remarks by praising Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Ind., for a morning television appearance where he defended “me and my family against these outrageous, lying ads” from Mr. Trump.

“That’s a good man,” he said of Mr. Buttigieg, to applause.

His campaign didn’t respond to several follow-up questions about the younger Mr. Biden’s decision, including about why Hunter Biden didn’t recuse himself earlier.

The last few weeks have been a challenging time for Mr. Biden, aides and allies have said. The Biden family, which is close-knit, has endured painful losses over the years, including the death in 2015 of Mr. Biden’s elder son Beau Biden; Hunter Biden is the former vice president’s only surviving son.

“Before he decided to run, we sat down and had a conversation about how hard it was going to be because we know Donald Trump, we saw what he did in 2016,” said Senator Chris Coons, Democrat of Delaware and a close Biden ally. “It’s different when it starts and it’s different when it picks up steam and it’s different when it’s, you know, a direct attack on you and your family.”

But, he said, Mr. Biden is “not going to be surprised” by any attacks on the debate stage on Tuesday, even highly personal ones.

Many Democrats think the Trump children, for their part, warrant tough scrutiny, given their own business dealings overseas.

In the weeks since news broke that Mr. Trump urged the Ukrainians to look into the Bidens, Mr. Biden has held only a handful of public events, spending significant time at fund-raisers as the third quarter of the year drew to a close. He finished the quarter having raised about $10 million less than his two top rivals, Senators Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Bernie Sanders of Vermont.

Mr. Biden has also toggled between responding sharply to Mr. Trump and working to pivot back to policy, though he has ramped up his criticisms of Mr. Trump forcefully in recent weeks, and is expected to make the president a major focus of his debate appearance on Tuesday, a Biden adviser said.

Jonathan Martin contributed reporting.

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Hunter Biden to Leave Chinese Company Board, Addressing Appearance of a Conflict

Westlake Legal Group 13xp-bidenchina-facebookJumbo Hunter Biden to Leave Chinese Company Board, Addressing Appearance of a Conflict Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Presidential Election of 2020 Boards of Directors Biden, Joseph R Jr Biden, Hunter Appointments and Executive Changes

ALTOONA, Iowa — Hunter Biden, whose overseas business dealings have drawn relentless attacks from President Trump and posed a threat to the candidacy of his father, Joseph R. Biden Jr., intends to step down from the board of a Chinese company, BHR, by the end of the month, his lawyer said in a statement on Sunday.

The statement also said that if Mr. Biden were to be elected president, his son would “agree not to serve on boards of, or work on behalf of, foreign-owned companies.”

The decision is the first action the pro-Biden camp has taken that appears to acknowledge the extent to which Hunter Biden’s business practices have created an untenable problem for his father’s 2020 campaign. With the fourth Democratic primary debate only two days away, political strategists said Hunter Biden’s decision to leave the Chinese company could help defuse the issue at a time when some of Mr. Biden’s lower-polling Democratic rivals have suggested his son’s work overseas raises questions about conflict of interest.

“Hunter’s decision won’t stop Trump from spreading debunked conspiracy theories about the past,” said David Axelrod, President Barack Obama’s former chief strategist. “But it does give Joe Biden an answer he didn’t have about potential conflicts of interest moving forward.”

There is no evidence Mr. Biden acted improperly to aid his son’s overseas financial dealings in China and Ukraine. Still, many on the Biden team have been gravely concerned about Mr. Trump’s ability to inflict damage with a barrage of baseless claims of corruption against the Biden family, some of which were included in an expansive pro-Trump advertising campaign.

Mr. Biden has consistently ranked as one of the Democratic Party’s leading presidential candidates. But his advantage has slipped in some recent polls, and his fund-raising has lagged his top rivals. Over the last two weeks he has begun to vigorously fight back against Mr. Trump’s criticisms and last week, in a fiery address in New Hampshire, he called for the first time for Mr. Trump to be impeached.

“You go to three foreign governments, not just all about me — three foreign governments, and ask them to come in and interfere in the sovereignty, the sacredness of the American electoral process?” Mr. Biden said Sunday at a union gathering in Altoona, apparently alluding to Mr. Trump’s dealings with Russia, as well as Ukraine and China. “Come on. Come on. This is outrageous. If in fact the House doesn’t move, let the facts fall where they may, then what does the next unethical president, if we elect one, what does that say they can do?”

The statement on Sunday from Hunter Biden’s lawyer, George Mesires, said his client had served only as a member of board of directors of BHR, an equity investment fund manager, “which he joined based on his interest in seeking ways to bring Chinese capital to international markets.” It was an unpaid position. Mr. Mesires has previously said Hunter Biden became an investor in 2017, taking a 10 percent stake in BHR.

Mr. Trump has said with no evidence that the younger Mr. Biden used political ties to induce China to invest $1.5 billion in a fund he was involved in, an assertion Joseph Biden has denied.

The statement had been in the works for weeks, one Biden adviser said. Separately, a person familiar with the decision said it came at Hunter Biden’s initiative, not his father’s.

Mr. Trump has directed his broadsides against Hunter Biden as he faces an impeachment inquiry in the House, which was spurred by the president’s phone call to the president of Ukraine urging the government to investigate Hunter Biden’s financial dealings there. Subsequently, Mr. Trump publicly called for China to look into Hunter Biden’s financial dealings in that country.

Aides say Mr. Biden has been bracing for weeks for questions about his son onstage at Tuesday’s CNN/New York Times debate. His allies and advisers say that any Democrat who broaches the subject is playing into Mr. Trump’s hands and hurting the party’s cause, and some have suggested Mr. Biden is prepared to make that case if he faces personal attacks, though several of his more prominent opponents have so far been careful to avoid criticizing Mr. Biden’s family.

Still, the national focus on Mr. Biden’s family has become a political vulnerability, some Democrats say, moving him off his campaign message and forcing him to play defense as he faces questions about conflicts of interest.

“It becomes a distraction, and that’s what hurt Hillary Clinton in 2016,” said Bret Nilles, the Democratic Party chairman in Linn County, Iowa, alluding to the scrutiny of Mrs. Clinton’s email practices while she was secretary of state.

The Biden campaign’s strategy has been to push back firmly on Mr. Trump’s claims, and to argue that the president is attacking Mr. Biden because he is concerned about running against him in a general election.

“They can also say, for Democrats who are nervous about it, ‘Hunter’s taken a step to say he won’t be on these boards if the vice president is elected president,’ and they could say, ‘we’ve addressed it and it’s time to move on,’” said Jennifer Palmieri, who was Mrs. Clinton’s communications director in the 2016 presidential campaign. “There are these campaign rituals you have to go through when your campaign does hit a perilous patch like this in order to signal to the press you’re handling it right, and to reassure supporters.”

At the union gathering here on Sunday, Mr. Biden began his remarks by praising Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Ind., for a morning television appearance where he defended “me and my family against these outrageous, lying ads” from Mr. Trump.

“That’s a good man,” he said of Mr. Buttigieg, to applause.

His campaign didn’t respond to several follow-up questions about the younger Mr. Biden’s decision, including about why Hunter Biden didn’t recuse himself earlier.

The last few weeks have been a challenging time for Mr. Biden, aides and allies have said. The Biden family, which is close-knit, has endured painful losses over the years, including the death in 2015 of Mr. Biden’s elder son Beau Biden; Hunter Biden is the former vice president’s only surviving son.

“Before he decided to run, we sat down and had a conversation about how hard it was going to be because we know Donald Trump, we saw what he did in 2016,” said Senator Chris Coons, Democrat of Delaware and a close Biden ally. “It’s different when it starts and it’s different when it picks up steam and it’s different when it’s, you know, a direct attack on you and your family.”

But, he said, Mr. Biden is “not going to be surprised” by any attacks on the debate stage on Tuesday, even highly personal ones.

Many Democrats think the Trump children, for their part, warrant tough scrutiny, given their own business dealings overseas.

In the weeks since news broke that Mr. Trump urged the Ukrainians to look into Mr. Biden’s family, he has held only a handful of public events, spending significant time at fund-raisers as the third quarter of the year drew to a close. He finished the quarter having raised about $10 million less than his two top rivals, Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders.

Mr. Biden has also toggled between responding sharply to Mr. Trump and working to pivot back to policy, though he has ramped up his criticisms of Mr. Trump forcefully in recent weeks, and is expected to make the president a major focus of his debate appearance on Tuesday, a Biden adviser said.

Jonathan Martin contributed reporting.

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Hunter Biden to Leave Chinese Company Board, His Lawyer Says

Westlake Legal Group 13xp-bidenchina-facebookJumbo Hunter Biden to Leave Chinese Company Board, His Lawyer Says Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Presidential Election of 2020 Boards of Directors Biden, Joseph R Jr Biden, Hunter Appointments and Executive Changes

Hunter Biden, son of Joseph R. Biden Jr., the former vice president and a Democratic presidential candidate, intends to step down from the board of a Chinese company by the end of the month, according to a statement from his lawyer.

Hunter Biden’s lawyer, George Mesires, said in a statement on Sunday that Mr. Biden would resign from the company, BHR, an equity investment fund manager.

The statement added that if Joseph Biden were to be elected president, his son would “agree not to serve on boards of, or work on behalf of, foreign-owned companies.”

The role of the younger Mr. Biden in foreign companies has been a source of political grist for President Trump, who this month publicly urged China to investigate the Bidens’ role.

In Ukraine, Hunter Biden earned $50,000 a month on the board of an energy company.

As vice president, his father pressured Ukraine to fire a prosecutor whose office oversaw investigations into the company’s owner. But by the time the elder Mr. Biden acted, there was no public evidence that the prosecutor was pursuing an investigation, and no evidence has surfaced that the vice president, who was carrying out Obama administration policy, was motivated by his son’s business interests.

In an interview with reporters, Mr. Trump called for both Ukraine and China to investigate.

“China should start an investigation into the Bidens, because what happened in China is just about as bad as what happened with Ukraine,” Mr. Trump said.

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Nissan Names a C.E.O., Makoto Uchida, to Lead Post-Ghosn Era

Westlake Legal Group merlin_162364665_403e2c58-b135-41f7-80fb-17f18c6b839b-facebookJumbo Nissan Names a C.E.O., Makoto Uchida, to Lead Post-Ghosn Era Uchida, Makoto Nissan Motor Co Japan Appointments and Executive Changes

TOKYO — In a surprise announcement, Nissan said Tuesday that it had selected a new chief executive to lead the embattled Japanese automaker, following the resignation of its former chief last month over a pay scandal.

Makoto Uchida, 53, will head the company beginning no later than Jan. 1, Nissan officials announced at a news conference at its headquarters in Yokohama. Mr. Uchida has worked at the company since 2003 and led its China operations since 2018. China is considered a key market for the struggling company.

Mr. Uchida takes the reins of the company as it faces its biggest challenges in nearly two decades. Almost one year since the ouster of its former leader, Carlos Ghosn, Nissan’s profits have plunged. Its sales have dropped. And its leadership has crumbled following the resignation last month of its chief executive, Hiroto Saikawa, over pay issues. The chaos has led to an exodus of top employees, and the company is in the process of cutting 12,500 jobs worldwide.

“We expect Mr. Uchida to lead the company as a team, immediately focus on the recovery of the business and revitalize the company to make a new Nissan,” Nissan’s chairman, Yasushi Kimura, told reporters.

“It is very important to demonstrate that this is a new Nissan,” Mr. Kimura said.

The selection of Mr. Uchida was unanimous, officials said.

Nissan has repeatedly clashed with its alliance partner, French automaker Renault, over management issues. The relationship deteriorated dramatically following the exit of Mr. Ghosn, who had worked to merge the companies, an effort that rankled some at Nissan who felt the company should remain independent.

Mr. Uchida was selected due to his experience abroad, as well as his dedication to the importance of the company’s alliance with its partners Renault and Mitsubishi, the head of the board’s nomination committee, Masakazu Toyoda, told reporters.

The company also announced the appointment of another two senior executives, in an effort to show it was making a clean break from the management issues that have plagued it since the exit of Mr. Ghosn.

Ashwani Gupta, the current chief operating officer at Mitsubishi and a former executive at Renault, was named Nissan’s chief operating officer. Jun Seki, a senior vice president at Nissan, will become vice chief operating officer.

“We selected the people who can show that this is a new Nissan in a strong way,” Mr. Kimura said.

The unexpected announcement came during a news conference following a meeting of the company’s full board in Yokohama. Nissan officials had previously announced that they would select a new chief executive by the end of October.

“I thought the sooner the better,” Mr. Kimura said in response to questions about the accelerated schedule.

Mr. Kimura declined to answer questions about tensions at the company, and particularly the future of Hari Nada, a powerful senior Nissan executive who has become the subject of controversy over possible conflicts of interest regarding the investigation of Mr. Ghosn.

Mr. Nada played a key role in the ouster of Mr. Ghosn and has struck a cooperation agreement with Japanese prosecutors to receive immunity in return for providing evidence against his ex-boss. Mr. Ghosn has been charged with four charges of financial wrongdoing, and awaits trial in Tokyo on bail. He says he is innocent of all charges.

Mr. Nada’s continued role at the company has been a point of concern for some directors and executives, who believe that he has been an obstacle to attempts to reform the company’s governance as it seeks to move past an era of top-down leadership, much criticized since Mr. Ghosn’s arrest in November.

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Quartz Editor in Chief Steps Down in Shake-Up

Westlake Legal Group merlin_162312954_7e3c6002-7502-47fd-accb-69fd53a48046-facebookJumbo Quartz Editor in Chief Steps Down in Shake-Up Quartz (Atlantic Media Co) Appointments and Executive Changes

Kevin Delaney, the editor in chief of Quartz and one of the digital publication’s co-founders is stepping down as part of a shake-up of the company’s leadership.

Quartz announced a series of changes on Monday, including naming another of its co-founders, Zach Seward, chief executive officer. Mr. Delaney had previously shared that role with Jay Lauf, who will become chairman of the company.

Quartz, which was created by Atlantic Media in 2012, was sold to Japanese financial intelligence company Uzabase last year.

This is a developing story. It will be updated.

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Spying Scandal at Credit Suisse Leads to Top Executive’s Resignation

When Tidjane Thiam joined Credit Suisse as chief executive in 2015, he was charged with turning around the Swiss bank and steadying its profit.

A drive for revenue at any cost had pushed traders at Credit Suisse to take outsized positions in risky and hard-to-sell securities. As trading conditions soured, the bank had to cut thousands of jobs.

By 2016, Mr. Thiam pivoted away from the volatile trading of its investment bank to enhance its more reliable wealth management division. Now that division has produced an unlikely, and embarrassing, corporate spy scandal.

The Swiss bank’s chief operating officer, Pierre-Olivier Bouée, resigned on Tuesday after a company board ordered an examination into his ordering the surveillance of its top wealth manager who quit to work for UBS.

Mr. Bouée could not be reached for comment.

In August, Mr. Bouée ordered the Swiss bank’s head of security services to track Iqbal Khan, its head of wealth management who was leaving after a personal disagreement with Mr. Thiam. Outside investigators were hired to follow Mr. Khan and see if he was trying to poach employees or clients in breach of his Credit Suisse contract.

But the investigation turned messy after a confrontation between Mr. Khan and a corporate spook outside a Zurich restaurant in mid-September.

Mr. Khan, who had left Credit Suisse weeks earlier, submitted a criminal complaint about the encounter, and Zurich’s public prosecutor now is investigating. The Swiss Justice Department also is looking into the death of a security expert involved in the surveillance, the prosecutor’s office said in a statement Tuesday. The office said it was examining the circumstances.

Urs Rohner, the chairman of Credit Suisse, said in a news conference Tuesday morning that the surveillance of Mr. Khan was “wrong.”

“The measure that was taken was disproportionate and did not reflect the criteria and standards by which we measure our own work,” Mr. Rohner said. He added: “The observation was wrong and inappropriate, even though the instructions were subjectively provided for the protection of our firm’s interest.”

The results of a Credit Suisse investigation into the episode, conducted by an external law firm for the board of directors, were announced on Tuesday. The board was told that the surveillance had found no evidence that Mr. Khan had tried to poach employees or clients from Credit Suisse.

The investigation also found that Mr. Thiam and other executives were not aware of the spying. Because of this, Mr. Rohner said, “we strongly reject any and all assertions made over the last days that call into question the personal and professional integrity of our C.E.O.”

The bank said on Tuesday that James B. Walker, who was chief financial officer for the United States, had been appointed to take over Mr. Bouée’s role. It also said that it had accepted the resignation of the head of global security.

After several years of putting its house in order, the bank on Tuesday faced questions about whether Mr. Thiam was properly informed about the surveillance — or what was happening under his management if he did not know that Mr. Khan was being watched.

“I don’t believe in my own mind, speaking as a board member, that that suggests that Mr. Thiam is not on top of the rest of the organization,” said John Tiner, chairman of the audit committee, during the news conference.

Mr. Rohner said there were personal differences and “heated discussions” between Mr. Khan and Mr. Thiam that ended in Mr. Kahn’s leaving, but he did not elaborate on their relationship. The investigation, he said, did not find any proof the spying was linked to animosity between the two men.

Still, Mr. Rohner apologized, saying that the results of the Credit Suisse investigation “do not change anything about the fact that the reputation of our bank has suffered in the last few days.”

Despite the revelations of the past month, Credit Suisse’s restructuring has had some positive effect on the bank. In the second quarter of this year, the bank’s net profits were 45 percent higher than the year before.

“I am aware that these events were damaging for the reputation of Credit Suisse, but also for the entire financial center of Switzerland, and for this I would like to sincerely apologize,” Mr. Rohner said.

More on Credit Suisse
Credit Suisse Fined $77 Million in Corruption Inquiry

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Westlake Legal Group merlin_137403429_b879449a-1fba-4fe2-b291-46f34a1d739c-threeByTwoSmallAt2X Spying Scandal at Credit Suisse Leads to Top Executive’s Resignation Zurich (Switzerland) UBS AG Thiam, Tidjane Industrial Espionage Credit Suisse Group AG Banking and Financial Institutions Appointments and Executive Changes
Credit Suisse Will Raise $4 Billion to Address Capital Concerns

April 26, 2017

Westlake Legal Group 27creditsuisse-1-videoLarge Spying Scandal at Credit Suisse Leads to Top Executive’s Resignation Zurich (Switzerland) UBS AG Thiam, Tidjane Industrial Espionage Credit Suisse Group AG Banking and Financial Institutions Appointments and Executive Changes

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The Week the C.E.O.s Got Smacked

One wanted to “elevate the world’s consciousness.”

Another aspired to “make a bigger difference around the world.”

A third, speaking of climate change, said, “We owe it to our children to find the right answers.”

This soaring rhetoric did not emanate from motivational speakers or religious leaders. It was uttered by wealthy chief executives hoping to curry favor with a public desperate to be inspired.

Ultimately, their idealism counted for little. Over the past week, the three men behind these lofty sentiments discovered that high-mindedness didn’t protect them from the harsh realities of running a business.

Adam Neumann stepped down as chief executive of WeWork after a botched attempt to take the company public. Devin Wenig left his role as chief of eBay after the company’s board grew impatient with poor performance. And Herbert Diess, the chief executive of Volkswagen, was charged with stock market manipulation and misleading investors. Mr. Diess remains in his job, but all week, smartphone push alerts seemed to ping with the news of executive heads rolling.

Those three executives joined the recently departed chiefs of Juul, Nissan, comScore and HSBC as reminders that at the end of the trading day, corporate chieftains are there to make shareholders money.

That seemingly rudimentary premise — that chief executives are responsible for delivering strong financial returns — has been easy to overlook in recent years. As the business world has engaged more in social and political debates, some C.E.O.s have come to believe that it is no longer enough to simply run a profit and loss statement. Instead, they are trying to inspire employees, combat climate change and take stands on moral issues, too.

“We’re in a world where we need leaders to improve the state of the world, not just the state of the bottom line,” Marc Benioff, the co-chief executive of Salesforce, said in an interview. “Every C.E.O. has this on their mind right now.”

Mr. Benioff was at the vanguard of this shift. In 2015, Salesforce was among the most vocal of the companies protesting a proposed Indiana law that he and other opponents said would permit discrimination against gay people. Since then, brands have begun taking stands more often. Soon after President Trump took office, Google, Microsoft and others protested his immigration policies. That summer, a group of chief executives who had agreed to advise the president disbanded their councils after Mr. Trump blamed “many sides” for the white supremacist violence in Charlottesville, Va.

Last month, the Business Roundtable, a group of influential chief executives, sought to redefine the role of business in society. And after a series of mass shootings, Walmart stepped into the national gun debate by limiting ammunition sales and calling on Congress to increase background checks.

“Companies, and by extension their management teams and their C.E.O.s, have a moral obligation to try to be a force for good,” Dan Schulman, the chief executive of PayPal, recently said. “I don’t think there’s any way that we can shirk that responsibility, and I don’t think there’s any way to fully stand away from the culture wars around us.”

There’s a catch, of course. Before C.E.O.s can change the world, they need to satisfy investors. “You have to deliver performance in your business,” Mr. Benioff said. “That’s table stakes.”

ImageWestlake Legal Group 28CEOS-neumann-articleLarge The Week the C.E.O.s Got Smacked WeWork Companies Inc Wenig, Devin N Volkswagen AG Visa Inc Peloton Neumann, Adam Juul Labs Inc Initial Public Offerings Galloway, Scott Etsy Inc Crane, David W (1959- ) Corporate Social Responsibility Boards of Directors Appointments and Executive Changes

Adam Neumann stepped down as C.E.O. of WeWork after a botched attempt to take the company public.CreditCole Wilson for The New York Times

That’s been easier to do of late. With the stock markets up sharply in recent years and venture capital flowing freely, some companies with mediocre — or even dismal — performance have been able to get by with little more than a good narrative.

But today, as the stock market wobbles and steeply valued start-ups face discerning public investors for the first time, not every company with an inspirational story is standing up to scrutiny.

Mr. Neumann found that out swiftly, when WeWork’s I.P.O. discussions with investors indicated the company might be valued at just $15 billion — a staggering erasure of value since January, when the co-working venture was said to be worth $47 billion. WeWork, known formally as the We Company, became something of a laughingstock in investing circles after issuing a prospectus that began, “We dedicate this to the energy of we — greater than any one of us, but inside all of us.”

“People’s radar for yoga babble is on high alert right now,” said Scott Galloway, a marketing professor at New York University.

And what is yoga babble? “It’s as if my yoga instructor went into investor relations,” Mr. Galloway said.

Devin Wenig left his role as chief executive of eBay after the company’s board grew impatient with poor performance.CreditJacob Kepler/Bloomberg

Another company that is testing the public market’s appetite for aspirational rhetoric and nonexistent profits is Peloton, which makes an internet-connected exercise bike and other gear.

Peloton bills itself as “an innovation company transforming the lives of people around the world.” The hope is that investors will focus more on that mission statement, and less on the fact that it lost $196 million in the last full year.

So far, it’s not working. Peloton started trading on Thursday and promptly fell 11 percent. Wall Street, it seems, is becoming less susceptible to the tech industry’s reality distortion field.

“Peloton is talking about delivering happiness and connecting people,” Mr. Galloway said. “No: You sell exercise equipment.”

But Peloton is hardly alone. Many of the most prominent technology companies today position themselves not so much as best-in-class operators in their category, but as virtual revolutions unto themselves.

Dropbox, an online storage company, says its mission is to “unleash the world’s creative energy by designing a more enlightened way of working.” Lyft, the ride-sharing app, says it aims to “improve people’s lives with the world’s best transportation.” Uber claims to “ignite opportunity by setting the world in motion.”

Spotify says it aims to “unlock the potential of human creativity.” Not to be outdone, Snap says that its social media app will “improve the way people live and communicate.”

Since going public over the last two years, the stock in all five of those companies has plummeted.

“Companies need a mission statement that is concrete enough to describe what they will do, as well as what they won’t do,” said Brad Smith, Microsoft’s president and chief legal officer. “If you promise too much, you risk having something that’s meaningless.”

The fact that utopian mission statements are now so commonplace stems, at least in part, from the fact that company founders are lionized, no matter their antics.

A generation ago, many founders were regarded as brilliant if crazy savants — product geniuses who weren’t to be trusted with operating a real company. The prevailing wisdom was that once a company was mature or went public, a seasoned executive should be brought in to run the show.

That changed after the success of companies like Google, Facebook and Amazon, all of which had founders who managed to turn their creations into world-eating behemoths. Now, tech-company founders are practically untouchable.

“Founders are now assigned this Christ-like association,” Mr. Galloway said. He added that this is not just a question of perception — tech founders often possess powerful voting rights that secure their control of the companies. “They’re given way too much rope to hang themselves and everyone around them.”

Witness Uber, Theranos and WeWork. Their charismatic founders raised billions of dollars and won over A-list investors before crumbling under pressure.

“We’re in a world where we need leaders to improve the state of the world, not just state of the bottom line,” Marc Benioff said.CreditEric Risberg/Associated Press

This shouldn’t have been hard to predict. Though several big tech companies have been similarly idealistic — think Google (“don’t be evil”) and Facebook (“make the world more open and connected”) — they are also wildly profitable.

When, on the other hand, aspirational rhetoric is paired with middling financial performance, there is rarely a happy ending.

The online marketplace Etsy went public in 2015. A quirky company from the outset, Etsy was helmed by Chad Dickerson, a beloved leader who prioritized generous employee benefits and earned the company B-Corp status, signifying a high level of social and environmental responsibility.

“I thought a lot about what, in addition to building shareholder value, a company can contribute to the world,” Mr. Dickerson said.

He didn’t have long to ruminate on such matters. Once Etsy was public, its stock started to fall. Soon, private equity firms were circling and activist investors were agitating for change. The Etsy board, which had been supportive of Mr. Dickerson’s agenda until then, reversed course, and he was unceremoniously fired.

“It’s not Milton Friedman’s 1970s shareholder value world anymore,” Mr. Dickerson said. “Except when it is.”

Last year, Nike made Colin Kaepernick the face of its Just Do It 30th anniversary campaign. “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything,” the ad read.

Mr. Kaepernick, the former N.F.L. quarterback who became a social justice icon for kneeling during the national anthem to protest police brutality, was a risky choice. Some customers called for a boycott and burned their shoes. Mr. Trump went after the company on Twitter, writing, “What was Nike thinking?” In the days after Nike unveiled its partnership with Mr. Kaepernick, the stock fell, losing $3.3 billion in market value.

For a moment, it looked like Nike had made a real sacrifice, putting its values on the line and paying for it with real money.

Yet after the initial furor died down, the stock rebounded. Online sales at Nike jumped 31 percent in the days after the Kaepernick ad debuted. Analysts upgraded the stock, which reached new highs.

It turns out Nike hadn’t sacrificed anything. One of the great marketers of the last 50 years, the company clearly knew what it was doing. Signing Mr. Kaepernick was a marketing tactic, and in the year since, it has done virtually nothing more with the star.

“There’s a great risk of this type of language being employed in a cyclical and opportunistic way,” Mr. Dickerson said. “I worry that these displays of conviction might actually be a lack of conviction, that it’s actually just based on market analytics.”

Sometimes efforts to support a higher purpose fail doubly, coming off as both opportunistic and ham-handed.

Johnson & Johnson introduced a Listerine mouthwash bottle sheathed in a rainbow flag to celebrate gay pride, drawing ridicule from the L.G.B.T.Q. community. Starbucks has clumsily waded into race relations more than once.

McDonald’s turned its golden arches logo upside down for International Women’s Day last year, “in honor of the extraordinary accomplishments of women everywhere and especially in our restaurants.” Online critics pounced, saying that if the fast food chain valued women so much, it should give them better pay and benefits.

“All of these companies finding their woke values is not a function of their principles,” Mr. Galloway said. “It’s a function of shareholder value.”

And then there are the companies that have decided that it is better to say nothing at all.

Blackstone, the private equity firm, did not sign on to the Business Roundtable statement.

Indra Nooyi, the former chief executive of PepsiCo, said she was willing to engage in third-rail debates only if they were relevant to the company’s broader mission. “Not all companies need to speak up about everything,” she said. “If the lofty rhetoric is not linked inextricably to the core business, you should question it.”

And Visa, the credit card processor, has assiduously stayed out of the social debates roiling the business world. “Our job is not to be dividing the country,” Al Kelly, Visa’s chief executive, said recently in an interview. “Our job is not to lecture people about what to do or what to buy. And the minute you give on guns, then what about soda? What about fur coats? What about birth control pills? What about? What about? What about?”

Mr. Kelly has reason to be worried. After all, when C.E.O.s do push for real, meaningful change, the judgment can be swift and harsh.

In 2015, David Crane was chief executive of NRG, one of the country’s largest power producers — and one of its largest polluters. Mr. Crane believed that NRG had a moral and business imperative to transition to renewable sources of power generation.

His vision for a clean energy company made Mr. Crane the talk of the industry, and animated idealistic employees. But when Mr. Crane asked the board to endorse a plan for NRG to be carbon neutral by 2040, they balked. One board member took him aside and said, “Are you crazy? You can’t say that.”

That director was right. When it became clear to investors that Mr. Crane was serious about his plans, NRG stock started to fall, and Mr. Crane was out.

In the end, it didn’t matter that Mr. Crane believed he was on the right side of history, or that his staff was behind him. “The fact that employees liked it was overwhelmed by the fact that the board didn’t like it, and investors didn’t care,” he said. (Mr. Crane, though, may have simply been ahead of his time. Since he lost his job, the cost of renewable energy has continued to decline, and several large utilities have pledged to become carbon neutral.)

Mr. Dickerson can relate. For all his efforts building Etsy’s culture and advancing environmental causes, his investors just weren’t that interested.

“At the end of the day, it’s still mostly about stock price if you’re a public company C.E.O.,” Mr. Dickerson said. “When the rubber meets the road and you’re sitting in the room with investors, they are looking at spreadsheets and asking you about what the numbers are going to look like.”

It is a lesson that many start-ups are just starting to learn. WeWork, Uber, Lyft, Spotify, Snap and Dropbox all had high hopes of becoming public market darlings. Instead, they’ve become dogs.

To some, the weak public appetite for idealistic, money-losing companies is a failure of imagination. Even on his way out, Mr. Neumann, who will keep a position as nonexecutive chairman, said his belief in the transformative power of WeWork had never been more intense.

“We have an opportunity to expand our global business to more people than ever before,” he said. “I have never believed in our business, our people and our future more.”

For others, however, the tepid response from public investors is a refreshing sign of good judgment.

“The market is prone to fits of sanity,” Mr. Galloway said. “We’re having that right now.”

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Trump Said Ukraine Envoy Would ‘Go Through Some Things.’ She Has Already.

WASHINGTON — President Trump’s words about Marie L. Yovanovitch, his former ambassador to Ukraine, were ominous. In a telephone conversation that has set off a political crisis for Mr. Trump, he told Volodymyr Zelensky, the president of Ukraine, that she was “bad news.”

“She’s going to go through some things,” he added.

In fact, she already has gone through quite a bit. Over the past several months, Ms. Yovanovitch, a decorated 33-year veteran of the State Department, has been vilified in the right-wing news media, denounced by the president’s eldest son as a “joker,” called a Democratic stooge by the president’s personal lawyer and then abruptly recalled from Kiev this May, months ahead of schedule.

Her supposed sin, never backed up by evidence, was that she had shown disloyalty to Mr. Trump, disparaging him behind his back. Her friends, who say her professionalism and history of diplomatic service make that highly unlikely, have another theory: She had turned into collateral damage in efforts by Mr. Trump and Rudolph W. Giuliani, his personal lawyer, to damage the reputation of former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., perhaps Mr. Trump’s most prominent Democratic rival in 2020.

Among the apparent strikes against her: A former Ukrainian prosecutor claimed in an interview with The New York Times that Ms. Yovanovitch had blocked his team from getting visas to the United States to deliver damaging information about Mr. Biden and his son Hunter to the F.B.I.

In targeting Ms. Yovanovitch, former colleagues say, Mr. Trump and his allies underscored how profoundly suspicious they are of the career government professionals around them, leading the president to bypass the usual procedures and staff while outsourcing aspects of foreign policy to Mr. Giuliani and others.

Although largely unknown to the outside world, Ms. Yovanovitch has now become a sort of heroine to the State Department’s career staff — as well as a cautionary tale to many longtime American diplomats and national security officials. To them, she symbolizes an atmosphere in which dissenting, or even insisting on established procedures, can get them marked as outsiders, shut out of meetings, excluded from policymaking and in the end publicly hung out to dry as enemies of the administration.

At a news briefing on Thursday in New York, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo refused to answer questions shouted by reporters about why Ms. Yovanovitch had been suddenly recalled to Washington.

Westlake Legal Group trump-phone-transcript-ukraine-promo-1569369870401-articleLarge-v3 Trump Said Ukraine Envoy Would ‘Go Through Some Things.’ She Has Already. Zelensky, Volodymyr Yovanovitch, Marie L United States Politics and Government United States International Relations Ukraine Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry State Department Giuliani, Rudolph W Diplomatic Service, Embassies and Consulates Biden, Joseph R Jr Biden, Hunter Appointments and Executive Changes

Full Document: Trump’s Call With the Ukrainian President

Trump is accused of pressing Ukraine to investigate his political rivals.

The American Academy of Diplomacy reacted by demanding that the State Department protect Ms. Yovanovitch from reprisals, calling the “threatening tone” of Mr. Trump’s remarks about her “very troubling.” The American Foreign Service Association, which represents State Department employees, urged that the American diplomatic corps “not be dragged into partisan political battles.”

Now serving as a diplomat in residence at Georgetown University, Ms. Yovanovitch did not respond to requests for an interview.

While the abrupt end to her ambassadorship was widely seen as punitive, one former colleague said that it was possibly motivated by a genuine concern for her, and that State Department officials decided it was safer to bring her home.

Nonetheless, the level of suspicion and paranoia inside the foreign policy and national security agencies, already high since Mr. Trump’s arrival, has only risen since Ms. Yovanovitch’s saga has surfaced.

“It’s more than crazy — it’s ugly, it’s threatening,” said Daniel Fried, a former ambassador and 40-year State Department official who has long dealt with Russian and Ukrainian issues and retired at the beginning of the Trump administration. “Masha Yovanovitch is known as a straight arrow, disciplined, professional.”

“If you take out Masha Yovanovitch, you send the message to every ambassador that we will not have your back,” he said.

Ms. Yovanovitch was born in Canada, moved to Connecticut at age 3 and became a naturalized American citizen at 18. In congressional testimony, she said her father fled the Soviet Union and then the Nazis; her mother grew up “stateless” in Germany. She said that background gave her a special empathy for those who had endured poverty, war and displacement.

Westlake Legal Group trump-ukraine-timeline-promo-1569528528277-articleLarge-v2 Trump Said Ukraine Envoy Would ‘Go Through Some Things.’ She Has Already. Zelensky, Volodymyr Yovanovitch, Marie L United States Politics and Government United States International Relations Ukraine Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry State Department Giuliani, Rudolph W Diplomatic Service, Embassies and Consulates Biden, Joseph R Jr Biden, Hunter Appointments and Executive Changes

Trump’s Efforts to Push Ukraine Toward a Biden Inquiry: A Timeline

A guide to the key figures and dates as President Trump and his allies pressured Ukraine to investigate his political opponents.

She grew up speaking Russian, graduated from Princeton and joined the State Department six years later. Her specialty was Eurasia.

President George W. Bush appointed her ambassador to Kyrgyzstan, then to Armenia. President Barack Obama named her ambassador to Ukraine in 2016. There, she spoke out strongly against corruption in the Ukrainian government and pushed for a variety of reforms, including ending the immunity enjoyed by legislators accused of crimes.

John E. Herbst, a former ambassador to Ukraine, described her as a highly skilled and meticulous diplomat who would never share her personal political opinions with foreign officials — or even with her diplomatic colleagues. She was careful not to overstep her authority, he said.

“Masha is someone who is always very attentive to propriety and to instructions, and by nature, cautious,” he said. “She is uniformly held in high regard.”

The campaign against her by Trump allies began more than a year ago, with a letter from Pete Sessions, a Texas Republican member of the House at the time who lost his re-election bid in November. He wrote to Mr. Pompeo that Ms. Yovanovitch should be fired for privately and repeatedly expressing “disdain” for the current administration.

Then, this spring, Joseph E. diGenova, a former federal prosecutor and an ally of Mr. Trump’s, alleged on a Fox News broadcast that the ambassador had disparaged Mr. Trump to Ukrainian officials, telling them “not to listen to him or obey his policy because he was going to be impeached.”

Two days later, Donald Trump Jr. posted a link on social media to a conservative website that described her as an anti-Trump Obama loyalist, and one Mr. Trump had been trying to fire for a year. He said his father’s administration should have “less of these jokers as ambassadors.”

Westlake Legal Group whistleblower-complaint-promo-1569502500532-articleLarge-v5 Trump Said Ukraine Envoy Would ‘Go Through Some Things.’ She Has Already. Zelensky, Volodymyr Yovanovitch, Marie L United States Politics and Government United States International Relations Ukraine Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry State Department Giuliani, Rudolph W Diplomatic Service, Embassies and Consulates Biden, Joseph R Jr Biden, Hunter Appointments and Executive Changes

Document: Read the Whistle-Blower Complaint

The complaint filed by an intelligence officer about President Trump’s interactions with the leader of Ukraine.

About the same time, a Ukrainian-American named Lev Parnas, who has worked with Mr. Giuliani, told people in Republican circles in Washington of tape recordings of conversations in which Ms. Yovanovitch had supposedly disparaged the president, according to people he spoke with. The existence of those recordings has not been substantiated.

Her troubles mounted as Mr. Giuliani stepped up pressure on the Ukrainian government to open an investigation into whether Mr. Biden, as vice-president, had forced out a top prosecutor in order to shut down an inquiry that might have implicated Mr. Biden’s son Hunter.

No evidence has emerged that Mr. Biden was actually trying to protect his son; in fact, many Western leaders viewed Ukraine’s top prosecutor as corrupt and were pressuring Ukraine’s leader to fire him.

But one former Ukrainian prosecutor, Kostiantyn H. Kulyk, told The New York Times in an interview in April that Ms. Yovanovitch had thwarted his efforts to meet with the F.B.I. to deliver damaging information about the Bidens by denying him a visa.

Mr. Giuliani also accused her of being a pawn of the New York financier George Soros, a major Democratic donor who backed a nonprofit anti-corruption group that worked in Ukraine. “The ambassador there is in the pocket of Soros,” he said in a March interview with The New York Times.

The critiques of Ms. Yovanovitch clearly reached Mr. Trump’s ears. In the July 25 phone call, Mr. Zelensky, Ukraine’s newly elected president, told Mr. Trump: “You were the first one who told me that she was a bad ambassador,” adding that “I agree with you 100 percent.”

The premature end to Ms. Yovanovitch’s tenure in Kiev was all the more remarkable because Ukraine’s government had just turned over with the surprise election of Mr. Zelensky in April.

“She’s capable and she’s tough, and why would you want to lose your ambassador right at the moment when there is a big change in the government?” asked Evelyn Farkas, a former deputy assistant defense secretary for the region that includes Ukraine.

Mr. Trump has not yet chosen a replacement.

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Eugene Scalia Confirmed by Senate as Labor Secretary

Westlake Legal Group 00scalia1-facebookJumbo Eugene Scalia Confirmed by Senate as Labor Secretary United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Senate Scalia, Eugene Regulation and Deregulation of Industry Labor Department (US) Labor and Jobs Appointments and Executive Changes

The Senate on Thursday confirmed Eugene Scalia, a longtime lawyer representing corporations, to be labor secretary.

Mr. Scalia, a son of the late Supreme Court justice Antonin Scalia, was chosen by President Trump in July, days after Mr. Trump’s first labor secretary, R. Alexander Acosta, announced that he would resign.

The Senate confirmed Mr. Scalia by a 53-to-44 margin.

Since Mr. Scalia’s nomination, Democrats and labor groups have questioned whether his background is consistent with the interests of American workers.

Mr. Scalia, 56, has spent much of his career at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, a prominent corporate law firm, where perhaps his best-known client was SeaWorld. He helped represent the company after a killer whale attacked and killed a trainer in 2010 and the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration determined that SeaWorld should have taken additional steps to protect its workers.

Mr. Scalia and his team argued unsuccessfully in federal appeals court that the company had sufficient training and safety measures and that it was up to its trainers to manage the remaining risks they faced on the job.

Mr. Scalia also took a leading role opposing a Clinton administration regulation known as the “ergonomics rule,” which was intended to protect workers against repetitive stress injuries. He dismissed the basis for the rule as “unreliable science” and contended that labor unions had promoted it in order to “force companies to give more rest periods, slow the pace of work and then hire more workers (read: dues-paying members).”

Democrats blocked Mr. Scalia’s nomination to serve as the Labor Department’s top lawyer in 2001 largely as a result of his efforts to oppose the rule. George W. Bush eventually installed him at the department through a recess appointment, but he served for only about a year before returning to private practice.

Mr. Scalia also represented Walmart in a fight against a Maryland law that would have required it to spend more on health care and Boeing in a case involving a union that accused it of violating labor law.

He helped represent a coalition of financial services industry groups that sued to block an Obama administration rule requiring brokers to act in their clients’ best interest when advising them on retirement accounts.

During his Senate confirmation hearing this month, Mr. Scalia acknowledged his long track record representing corporations but argued that he was working diligently on behalf of his clients rather than to advance his own views. He said he was capable of working just as hard on behalf of American workers, citing the issue of ergonomics, on which he said he worked closely with the Labor Department’s career staff during his tenure there.

“The lawyer who had the lead on the issue of ergonomics wrote a letter, joined a letter from former career officials supporting my nomination,” Mr. Scalia said.

In the letter, 13 former Labor Department officials wrote that Mr. Scalia “was very supportive of enforcement litigation to vindicate the rights of workers.”

Democrats also questioned Mr. Scalia at his confirmation hearing over his views on gay rights, citing a college newspaper column in which he wrote that parenting by a lesbian couple should not be treated “as equally acceptable or desirable as the traditional family life.”

Mr. Scalia implied that his views on the subject had changed in the nearly 35 years since he wrote the column. “I would not write those words today, in part because I now have friends and colleagues to whom they would cause pain,” he said.

The vacancy at the Labor Department arose after Mr. Acosta faced new questions about his role a decade ago as a federal prosecutor in Florida — specifically, a plea deal reached with the financier Jeffrey Epstein in a sex-crimes case.

The White House and employer groups had at times grown impatient with the pace at which Mr. Acosta advanced largely pro-business changes to regulations. But many of the department’s leading initiatives were either completed or close to being finalized before Mr. Scalia’s confirmation.

That includes a modest expansion in the ranks of those eligible for overtime pay after a federal judge struck down the more ambitious expansion the Obama administration had planned. The department has also put forward a rule making it harder to hold companies liable for employment law violations committed by their contractors or franchisees.

Businesses had been eager to see these measures completed so that a congressional review period would end before elections that could produce a Democratic Congress and president.

Mr. Scalia will help complete some of the department’s remaining regulatory initiatives. But his top priority as labor secretary may be to defend newly finalized rules against likely legal challenges from worker groups.

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Eugene Scalia Confirmed by Senate as Labor Secretary

Westlake Legal Group 00scalia1-facebookJumbo Eugene Scalia Confirmed by Senate as Labor Secretary United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Senate Scalia, Eugene Regulation and Deregulation of Industry Labor Department (US) Labor and Jobs Appointments and Executive Changes

The Senate on Thursday confirmed Eugene Scalia, a longtime lawyer representing corporations, to be labor secretary.

Mr. Scalia, a son of the late Supreme Court justice Antonin Scalia, was chosen by President Trump in July, days after Mr. Trump’s first labor secretary, R. Alexander Acosta, announced that he would resign.

The Senate confirmed Mr. Scalia by a 53-to-44 margin.

Since Mr. Scalia’s nomination, Democrats and labor groups have questioned whether his background is consistent with the interests of American workers.

Mr. Scalia, 56, has spent much of his career at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, a prominent corporate law firm, where perhaps his best-known client was SeaWorld. He helped represent the company after a killer whale attacked and killed a trainer in 2010 and the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration determined that SeaWorld should have taken additional steps to protect its workers.

Mr. Scalia and his team argued unsuccessfully in federal appeals court that the company had sufficient training and safety measures and that it was up to its trainers to manage the remaining risks they faced on the job.

Mr. Scalia also took a leading role opposing a Clinton administration regulation known as the “ergonomics rule,” which was intended to protect workers against repetitive stress injuries. He dismissed the basis for the rule as “unreliable science” and contended that labor unions had promoted it in order to “force companies to give more rest periods, slow the pace of work and then hire more workers (read: dues-paying members).”

Democrats blocked Mr. Scalia’s nomination to serve as the Labor Department’s top lawyer in 2001 largely as a result of his efforts to oppose the rule. George W. Bush eventually installed him at the department through a recess appointment, but he served for only about a year before returning to private practice.

Mr. Scalia also represented Walmart in a fight against a Maryland law that would have required it to spend more on health care and Boeing in a case involving a union that accused it of violating labor law.

He helped represent a coalition of financial services industry groups that sued to block an Obama administration rule requiring brokers to act in their clients’ best interest when advising them on retirement accounts.

During his Senate confirmation hearing this month, Mr. Scalia acknowledged his long track record representing corporations but argued that he was working diligently on behalf of his clients rather than to advance his own views. He said he was capable of working just as hard on behalf of American workers, citing the issue of ergonomics, on which he said he worked closely with the Labor Department’s career staff during his tenure there.

“The lawyer who had the lead on the issue of ergonomics wrote a letter, joined a letter from former career officials supporting my nomination,” Mr. Scalia said.

In the letter, 13 former Labor Department officials wrote that Mr. Scalia “was very supportive of enforcement litigation to vindicate the rights of workers.”

Democrats also questioned Mr. Scalia at his confirmation hearing over his views on gay rights, citing a college newspaper column in which he wrote that parenting by a lesbian couple should not be treated “as equally acceptable or desirable as the traditional family life.”

Mr. Scalia implied that his views on the subject had changed in the nearly 35 years since he wrote the column. “I would not write those words today, in part because I now have friends and colleagues to whom they would cause pain,” he said.

The vacancy at the Labor Department arose after Mr. Acosta faced new questions about his role a decade ago as a federal prosecutor in Florida — specifically, a plea deal reached with the financier Jeffrey Epstein in a sex-crimes case.

The White House and employer groups had at times grown impatient with the pace at which Mr. Acosta advanced largely pro-business changes to regulations. But many of the department’s leading initiatives were either completed or close to being finalized before Mr. Scalia’s confirmation.

That includes a modest expansion in the ranks of those eligible for overtime pay after a federal judge struck down the more ambitious expansion the Obama administration had planned. The department has also put forward a rule making it harder to hold companies liable for employment law violations committed by their contractors or franchisees.

Businesses had been eager to see these measures completed so that a congressional review period would end before elections that could produce a Democratic Congress and president.

Mr. Scalia will help complete some of the department’s remaining regulatory initiatives. But his top priority as labor secretary may be to defend newly finalized rules against likely legal challenges from worker groups.

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com