Mitch McConnell’s wife Elaine Chao may be forced to resign in scandal from Donald Trump’s cabinet

We need your help! Palmer Report articles are all 100% free to read, with no forced subscriptions and nothing hidden behind paywalls. If you value our content, you're welcome to pay for it:
Pay $5 to Palmer Report:
Pay $25 to Palmer Report:
Pay $75 to Palmer Report:

Sign up for the Palmer Report Mailing List.

Even as Donald Trump has spent the day frantically tweeting angry and defensive rhetoric about Puerto Rico and other controversies, he has yet to address the exploding scandals within his own cabinet. It’s already prompted last night’s resignation of HHS Secretary Tom Price, and at least four other cabinet members have been caught in similar infractions. But the next cabinet member to resign may be due to a different kind of financial scandal: Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao.

Chao is best known for three things. 1) She was embroiled in a drug shipment scandal before Trump appointed her (link), and objectively speaking, should not have been given the job. 2) She’s the wife of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. 3) It’s widely believed that Trump gave her the job in an attempt at convincing McConnell to protect him in his Russia scandal. On top of all that, it turns out Chao decided to hang onto six figures worth of stock in an infrastructure company called Vulcan Materials (link). Why is that a problem?

As the Secretary of Transportation, Elaine Chao gets to decide whether to steer large amounts of taxpayer dollars to Vulcan Materials or to one of its infrastructure competitors. This kind of conflict of interest is precisely why cabinet members are supposed to part ways with investments in individual companies. She was hoping her ownership in the company would remain under the radar, but now that other Trump cabinet members are caught up in financial scandals, suddenly the spotlight is on Chao’s stock position. It’s something she can’t actually fix.

   

Elaine Chao used to sit on the Vulcan board of directors, which is how she acquired the stock. It’s structured such that she can’t sell it until April of next year. In the mean time, if she’s forced to choose between forfeiting the stock to keep her job, or resigning her job to keep the stock, it seems likely she’ll choose the latter.

Sign up for the Palmer Report Mailing List.
We need your help! Palmer Report articles are all 100% free to read, with no forced subscriptions and nothing hidden behind paywalls. If you value our content, you're welcome to pay for it:
Pay $5 to Palmer Report:
Pay $25 to Palmer Report:
Pay $75 to Palmer Report:

Write for the Palmer Report Community Section.