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News alert: DOT Chief Elaine Chao To Resign

FreightWaves
·1 min read

U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao is resigning following the storming of the U.S. Capitol yesterday by pro-Trump demonstrators.

"Yesterday our country experienced a traumatic and entirely avoidable event as supporters of the president stormed the Capitol Building following a rally he addressed," Chao stated in a message to DOT employees on Thursday and included in a tweet. "As I'm sure is the case with many of you, it has deeply troubled me in a way that I simply cannot set aside."

Chao said her resignation is effective next Monday and that her agency will work to help with the transition of incoming DOT Secretary nominee Pete Buttigieg.

There was no immediate word on who would run the agency until Buttigieg is confirmed. DOT General Counsel Steve Bradbury was authorized in September 2019 by President Donald Trump to "perform the functions and duties" of the Office of Deputy Secretary of Transportation.

Chao, who is married to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, served as U.S. secretary of labor from 2001-January 2009.

She began her executive career in public service working on transportation and trade issues at the White House. She then served as deputy maritime administrator, U.S. Department of Transportation, followed by chairwoman of the Federal Maritime Commission and then deputy secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation.

Trump announced on Dec. 8 his intent to appoint Chao to be a member of the Board of Trustees of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.

This story will be updated.

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