Labor Dept. Lawyer Says Trump Appointee Intervened in Oracle Case

The Labor Department had no touch upon that account.

M. Patricia Smith, the Labor Department solicitor below President Barack Obama from 2010 to 2017, mentioned in a textual content message that the 2 labor secretaries she served below didn’t straight contain themselves in settlement negotiations in circumstances that the division had introduced. She mentioned that Thomas E. Perez, Mr. Obama’s second labor secretary, would weigh in on the broader authorized questions at stake in a negotiation however that “this number vs. that number was left to the litigators.”

Ms. Smith mentioned that it was common for attorneys to ship her drafts of briefs in vital circumstances however that she would have commented solely on the general arguments, not phrase selection and grammar.

A present official and a former official with information of the case described Oracle as aggressive from the get-go in coping with the Labor Department in the matter. Not lengthy earlier than the trial started, the choose admonished Oracle for its “scorched earth” technique of elevating an “undifferentiated mass of what mostly appear to be meritless objections.”

Oracle has lengthy been proactive in attempting to affect laws and regulation in Washington, spending $eight.2 million on federal lobbying final yr, in keeping with the Center for Responsive Politics. And its high executives have constructed one thing uncommon amongst their tech trade friends: an in depth relationship with President Trump and his administration.

When Ms. Catz, the chief govt, joined the Trump transition crew, most tech executives have been nonetheless sizing up the incoming administration. “I plan to tell the president-elect that we are with him and are here to help in any way we can,” she mentioned earlier than a gathering between Mr. Trump and tech chief executives in December 2016.

Bloomberg News has reported that at a dinner in April 2018, Ms. Catz spoke with Mr. Trump about Oracle’s yearslong struggle with Amazon and different firms over a $10 billion Pentagon cloud computing contract, although the Pentagon later introduced that Oracle was out of the operating as a result of it hadn’t met the minimal necessities for the mission.

The firm’s govt chairman, Larry Ellison, hosted a fund-raiser for President Trump this yr at his property in Rancho Mirage, Calif. And the 2 males mentioned the malaria drug hydroxychloroquine as a possible remedy for the coronavirus, in keeping with an individual aware of the dialogue. Mr. Trump got here to be an evangelist for the drug, regardless of a scarcity of scientific proof about its efficacy for such use.

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