Alexander Acosta

Trump to formally nominate Eugene Scalia as labor secretary

Eugene Scalia.
Photo: Tom Williams/Roll Call/Getty Images

President Trump on Tuesday announced his intention to nominate Eugene Scalia, son of the late conservative Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, as labor secretary.

Why it matters: The Cabinet position has been filled by acting Secretary Patrick Pizzella since Alex Acosta resigned in July amid backlash for his involvement in negotiating the sweetheart plea deal Jeffrey Epstein received in 2008. Acosta had already been on shaky ground with Trump for moving slowly on deregulation, one of the administration's top priorities.

What we know: The life and death of Jeffrey Epstein

A protest group called "Hot Mess" holds signs of Jeffrey Epstein in front of the Federal courthouse on July 8. Photo: Stephanie Keith / Stringer/Getty Images.

Federal prosecutors charged multimillionaire Jeffrey Epstein with sexual abuse and sex trafficking of underage girls in July. On Aug. 10, the 66-year-old was found dead in an apparent suicide at a federal detention center in New York City.

The latest: After alleged victims and their attorneys testified at a hearing on Aug. 27, a federal judge formally closed the criminal sex trafficking case against Epstein Aug. 29. Meanwhile, prosecutors in France opened a preliminary investigation into Epstein, "in connection with possible offenses such as rape, the sexual assault of minors and criminal conspiracy" in late August.