MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow revealed a shocking tale of corruption involving Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and his wife, Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao.
She told the story of J. Todd Inman, who was a top aide on McConnell’s 2014 re-election campaign.
Maddow reported how Inman has been making money recently.
“The Transportation Department under Secretary Elaine Chao designated a special liaison to help with grant applications and other priorities from her husband Mitch McConnell’s state of Kentucky, paving the way for grants totaling at least $78 million for favored projects as McConnell prepared to campaign for reelection,” Politico reported.
“Chao’s designation of Inman as a special intermediary for Kentucky — a privilege other states did not enjoy — gave a special advantage to projects favored by her husband, which could in turn benefit his political interests. In such situations, ethicists say, each member of a couple benefits personally from the success of the other,” Politico added.
The host was shocked.
“She set up a special lane at the Department of Transportation specifically to fund things that would benefit her husband,” Maddow explained.
“I know we’re supposed to be inured to this kind of thing, but even in the Trump administration, but . . .” she said, holding up her hands so as to convey there was nothing left to say.
During her handoff to “The Last Word” host Lawrence O’Donnell, the two discussed the implications of the scandal.
“One point I want to make, is among the people who don’t like that story are Republican senators, because they know where the money comes from, it comes from their projects,” O’Donnell noted. “They also have projects that are in that application pipeline and they don’t have an individual there whose job it is to cover their state in the transportation.”
“I mean, this is the sort of thing you would find out was happening in some banana republic around the world and you would be like yeah, that’s why they can’t get State Department-funded blah, blah, blah — they’re too corrupt. In this case, it’s Mitch McConnell’s family,” Maddow noted.
“They could make it fair, they could give every senator a spouse in the Cabinet,” Maddow pointed out.