U.S. Transport Secretary resigns over Capitol Hill riot

Lawmakers probe Transportation Secretary Chao’s ties to family shipping business
Elaine Chao


U.S. Transportation Secretary, Elaine Chao, has announced her resignation over Wednesday’s breach of the Capital Hill by supporters of President Donald Trump.

She is the first cabinet member to quit over the incident, which drew outrage from within the country and around the world.

“Yesterday, our country experienced a traumatic and avoidable event as supporters of the President stormed the Capitol building following a rally he addressed.

“As I am sure is the awe with many of you, it has deeply troubled me in a way that I simply cannot set aside.

“Today, I am announcing my resignation as U.S. Secretary of Transportation, to take effect on Jan. 11, 2021,” Chao, wife of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, said.

Several White House officials have resigned since armed Trump supporters stormed the building on Wednesday, forcing a lockdown.

Congress was meeting to certify the Nov. 3 election won by former Vice President Joe Biden when the mob struck, shortly after Trump addressed protesters at a rally in Washington.

Earlier on Thursday, U.S. Deputy National Security Adviser, Matt Pottinger, resigned over the incident, the National Security Adviser, Rober O’Brien, confirmed in a tweet.

“Asking Matt Pottinger to serve as my deputy was my first act as NSA and it turned out to be one of my best decisions.

“As he heads West to rejoin his family in beautiful Utah, Matt does so with my appreciation for a job well done and with my enduring friendship,” O’Brien said.

On Wednesday night, Stephanie Grisham, Chief of Staff to the U.S. First Lady, Melania Trump, and Sarah Matthews, White House Deputy Press Secretary, resigned.

Also on Thursday, Mick Mulvaney, the President’s former acting Chief of Staff and Budget Director, stepped down as special envoy to Northern Ireland.