February 25th, 2009
11:41 AM ET
5 years ago

Labor Department greets new leader

Hilda Solis was recently confirmed as secretary of labor.
Hilda Solis was recently confirmed as secretary of labor.

(CNN) - Hilda Solis, recently confirmed as secretary of labor, was greeted Wednesday by a crowd of enthusiastic Labor Department employees who braved the cold to greet their new boss on her first day of work.

Solis was greeted as she stepped out of her car by interim acting Secretary of Labor Edward C. Hugler. She shook hands and signed autographs before addressing the crowd.

"As someone who came into this town eight years ago, I can't begin to tell you how incredibly emotional, happy, ... fired up and ready to go [I am] to get our country back to where it needs to be," she said.

Noting the difficult road ahead, she added, "We need to revitalize this agency and we will. We are going to be working and, like the president said yesterday, we are not quitters."

The Senate voted 80-17 Tuesday to confirm the four-term California congresswoman as the Obama administration's labor secretary.

Consideration of the nomination had been briefly delayed as senators reviewed a possible tax controversy surrounding Solis' husband, but the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee supported the nomination
earlier this month.

She takes over a Cabinet agency responsible for enforcing labor laws and managing unemployment insurance at a time when the U.S. unemployment rate stands at 7.6 percent.

"She's a forceful advocate for working families and will bring to the job a genuine understanding and a passion for the issues that affect families so deeply," Sen. Christopher Dodd, D-Connecticut, said Tuesday.


Filed under: Hilda Solis
soundoff (64 Responses)
  1. Jim

    Just another flunkie for the unions.

    February 25, 2009 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  2. yuri

    Good luck, Hilda! If you've got anything to say, say it NOW!

    February 25, 2009 12:00 pm at 12:00 pm |
  3. Laverne

    Hilda Solis will be great at this job! Congratulations Hilda!

    February 25, 2009 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  4. Steve(the smart one)

    Together we will break the backs of the slave traders forever.

    February 25, 2009 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  5. Joel from Ohio

    Yes, YES finally someone who cares about the common man. Why to go Obama and getting Hilda Solis for secretary of labor.

    February 25, 2009 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  6. July

    Congratulations Mrs. Solis ;o)

    February 25, 2009 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  7. Flo, Denver

    It would have been nice if Obama had appointed someone the country knew a little better. I can see where a Congresswoman would deal with Labor issues, at least on a semi-regular basis especially in Calif, but until now I've never heard of this person.

    February 25, 2009 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  8. Jackie in Dallas

    Let's hope that she can hit the ground running, and help those desperately in need of helping! One aspect of the unemployment system could use some serious work...that is the retraining program. Another area is to work with both national and state programs to allow those on unemployment to qualify for food stamps. That is particularly insane, considering that if you are unemployed, seriously looking for work (a prerequisit here in Texas), if you get unemployment money, you make too much to qualify for food stamps. DUH???

    February 25, 2009 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  9. Mark, B'ham., Al.

    She supports getting rid of secret ballots for unionizing and does not support E-Verify so US Citizens and Legal Immigrants get the jobs, not Illegal Immigrants (for you liberals undocumented) Remember do not sign the card as the Union Boss strong arms you in th parking lot!

    February 25, 2009 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  10. Terry

    Roosevelt's New Deal, Truman's Fair Deal, Kennedy's New Frontier, and Johnson's Great Society built the American middle class. Before 1932, America's middle class was very small. The assault of Conservatism on the middle class, led by Reagan and the Bushes, has resulted in the transfer of enormous wealth from the middle class to the wealthy class.

    I hope that the new Secretary of Labor will stress the creation of good jobs with a career path, job security, and decent benefits – like Americans used to take for granted.

    The unspoken goal of America's corporate employers is to make America a nation of poorly paid workaholics. They would bring back the sixty hour week (many of us are already working 60 or more hours). To them, all employees are temps. "Work 'em hard and lay them off."

    February 25, 2009 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  11. JOE KILOZ

    FINALLY --- SOMEONE ----– WHO -----–SPEAKS -----FOR ----- THE -------HARD-WORKING -------MIDDLE ------- CLASS ------ WORKER!

    February 25, 2009 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  12. MICK in MESA

    Great! Ever since Reagan busted the Flight Controllers Union we have needed a stronger voice for labor – organized or not.
    Remember America, you do not have to join a union to benefit from a strong organized labor.
    Organized labor sets the defacto standards for management/labor benefits and behaviour towards each other that even the non-union shops and businesses ultimately benefit from.
    After 25 years it time the pendelum begins to swing towards those that take a shower when they come home from work...

    February 25, 2009 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  13. Gary

    We have another leftist liberal in the administration who will promote labor unions, ACCORN and alike. This is another mistake and I do not believe it will help us to create jobs.

    February 25, 2009 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  14. Wellcome

    Well come aboad ms. secretary may God bless you and give you the strength you need to handle this Job.

    February 25, 2009 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  15. knock knock RJ

    I want the names of the seventeen anti-Americans,anti-working men and women slave traders.

    February 25, 2009 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  16. Baze

    Looks like her husband paid off the right people to get over his tax issues.

    February 25, 2009 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  17. Angus McDugan

    Can't we get a different picture of her. This one looks like she just sharted.

    February 25, 2009 12:56 pm at 12:56 pm |
  18. cnnnewser

    Welcome aboard the best Administration in decades!

    February 25, 2009 12:56 pm at 12:56 pm |
  19. Sniffit

    blah blah unions blah blah

    yawn

    February 25, 2009 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |
  20. David Robinson

    Rick Santilli should look down and realize where he is standing. Clearly he forgot greed is number one with him and his associates.
    No one, Wall Street, the Banks or Mortgage companies can say they thought what they were doing was right. But now it is time to pay for their actions, so just shut up.

    February 25, 2009 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  21. Thomas

    Who would ask the Secretary of Labor for their autograph????

    February 25, 2009 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  22. Typical White Person

    Autographs? Huh?

    February 25, 2009 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  23. fearful for my country

    How convienient. A hispanic running the labor dept. I guess more americans will be on welfare and more mexicans will be working and owning american homes.

    February 25, 2009 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  24. MICK in MESA

    Great!
    Ever since Reagan busted the Flight Controllers Union we have needed a stronger voice for labor – organized or not.
    Remember America, you do not have to join a union to benefit from strong organized labor and the contracts they cut.
    Organized labor sets the defacto standards for mutual management and labor benefits along with workplace behaviour towards each other that even the non-union shops and businesses benefit from.
    After 25 years it time the pendelum begins to swing towards those that take a shower when they come home from work…

    February 25, 2009 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  25. JOE KILOZ

    LIKE,,,,,,,,,,OBAMA,,,,,,,,,,SAYS,,,,,,,,,,,,,,YOU AND ME,,,,,,,,,,,,,MUST,,,,,,,,,,,,,

    PAY,,,,,,,,,,,OUR,,,,,,,,TAXES,,,,,,,,,,,WHILE,,,,,,,,,,HIS,,,,,,,,,,CABINET,,,,,,,,,,,,

    IS,,,,,,,,,,A,,,,,,,,,,,POSTER,,,,,,,,,,,,CHILD,,,,,,,,,,,OF,,,,,,,,,,,,,EVASION

    February 25, 2009 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
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