US Transportation Secretary resigned following the capitol chaos

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In response to the riot at the US Capitol on Wednesday by Trump's supporters, President Donald Trump's secretaries, Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, resigned from her post.

She was among the administration officials who resigned as pro-trump supporters violated the US Capitol's breach.

Chao said that she would resign effective from Monday in the statement addressed to the agency she led.  She stated that she was deeply troubled by an easily avoidable riot at the Capitol building.

"I am tremendously proud of the many accomplishments we were able to achieve together for our country, and I will never forget the commitment you have for this Department and the United States of America," her statement continued.

She stated that she would help Pete Buttigieg, the Transportation Secretary-designate, in taking on the department.

"It has been the honor of a lifetime to serve the U.S. Department of Transportation," she tweeted Thursday.

Calling Wednesday's event "unconscionable for our country" On Thursday,  Devos submitted her resignation letter to Trump.

"There is no mistaking the impact your rhetoric had on the situation, and it is the inflection point for me," she wrote.

"Impressionable children are watching all of this, and they are learning from us. I believe we each have a moral obligation to exercise good judgment and model the behavior we hope they would emulate. They must know from us that America is greater than what transpired yesterday."

On Thursday, the assistant secretary for the Department of Health and Human Services, Dr. Elinore F. McCance-Katz, also submitted her resignation letter.
She had planned to stay on until the next administration but changed her mind when she "the violent takeover of the Capitol building" in front of her eyes.

"I believe that this behavior was totally unacceptable and, in my own heart, I simply am not able to continue," she wrote.

"Because I believe that the mental health of our people has suffered so greatly under the stresses of COVID-19, the social justice issues that have been so painful for so many, and now with the rending of our nation over questions raised about the presidential election, I cannot support language that results in incitement of violence and risks our very existence," she added.

Chao discussed Riot's matter and her resignation with her husband, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, before officially deciding her resignation around 11 am.

"Today, there was a lot of soul-searching and discussion," a senior official said. "It was obviously the right thing to do."

Chao called White House chief of staff Mark Meadows to inform him of her decision before releasing her statement, the senior official said. President has not received her letter of resignation yet.

Several senior officials at the Transportation Department were considering resigning from their post, but Chao encouraged them to stay until January 20 to ensure a smooth transition. 

As there is no deputy secretary, the department's general counsel Steven Bradbury is in the line of succession. He is likely to act as Transportation secretary if President doesn't come up with another name.

Intending to revive the nation's crumbling infrastructure, Chao, a veteran of the Republican administration, came into her post.

But the package to rebuild roads, bridges, and highways never came, hindered by other legislative priorities, including tax cuts and health care. Earlier in Trump's administration, it announced a $1.5 trillion infrastructure plan but faced obstacles in Congress.

Appearing at White House events and traveling the country to view administration-sponsored projects,  Chao remained a dutiful foot soldier for the President till now.

She came to her post with years of government experience. She also acted as a labor secretary for eight years in the period of President George W. Bush.

She had previously navigated the spats deftly. In August 2017, in the midst of a dispute between the President and McConnell over health care, she was asked what she thought of the dispute.

"I stand by my man," Chao said, "both of them."

Publish : 2021-01-08 14:21:00

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