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Source : White House
January 8, 2021
Author : Patty Rodriguez
Department of Transportation (DoT) Secretary Elaine Chao announced her resignation from the Trump Administration on Twitter the day after pro-Trump protesters stormed the Capitol building, Five senior Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) officials followed suit, as well as a number of other cabinet and White House officials.
“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, who is married to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnel (R-KY) wrote in a statement posted to Twitter. She said that she was proud of the “many accomplishments” for the country her team made through the DoT and said she would help the Biden Administration’s Pete Buttigieg “with taking on the responsibility of running this wonderful department.”
McConnell — who will become Senate Minority Leader once the two Democratic Georgia Senators are sworn in because the Vice President (Kamala Harris) will break the 50-50 tie in favor of the Democrats — reportedly “never wants to speak to President Donald Trump again.”
Meanwhile, media outlets have obtained an internal email from the FAA, which sits within the DoT, noting that five “non-career” senior appointees had put in their resignation. They include, according to Fox Business: “Arjun Garg, chief counsel and current acting deputy FAA administrator; Brianna Manzelli, assistant administrator for communications; Kirk Shaffer, assistant administrator for airports; Bailey Edwards, assistant administrator for policy, international affairs and environment; and Andrew Giacini, acting administrator for legislative affairs.”
"Our colleagues’ decisions, given the gravity of yesterday’s events, are understandable," FAA chief of staff Angela Stubblefield wrote to the agency in an email. "Like all of us, they are outraged by the brazen and violent attack on one of the sacred institutions of American democracy."
"Each has been a valuable member of the FAA senior leadership team, provided sound counsel to the Administrator and me, and contributed mightily to the agency’s success," Stubblefield continued.
FAA Administrator Steve Dickson took to YouTube to address the official’s, including Chao's departure. “I thank them for their extraordinary leadership in this Agency, their steadfast focus on safety, and the tremendous support they have provided to me in the last year and a half,” Dickson said. “We are a resilient nation, and if we show respect, compassion, support, and understanding for one another, I know we will persevere to get through this challenging time and come out even stronger on the other side both as a nation and as an FAA family.”
He also spoke directly to FAA employees that have not submitted resignations, saying “Your commitment to the FAA’s mission and your colleagues during these ongoing troubling times for our nation has been extraordinary, and it continues to be, and as we've seen many times in our history, FAA people always rise to the occasion. And here we need to do so again, by staying focused on safety and our mission and by working together. The bedrock of the FAA is our people. We must continue to treat one another with respect and civility, even when we disagree.”
Meanwhile, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, Chief of Staff to the First Lady Stephanie Grisham, Deputy National Security Advisor Matt Pottinger, Deputy White House Press Secretary Sarah Mathews, White House Social Secretary Rickie Niceta, Acting Chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisors Tyler Goodspeed, and Former White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney have all resigned since the riots.
With these departures, one might say the White House is starting to look a bit like a ghost house.
Notably absent from the list is Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson, who is the last remaining original cabinet member. As such, social media users have been trolling him, urging anybody who knows him to “wake him up” in case he wants to leave too.
One Twitter user wrote “Ben Carson is officially the winner of the 1st Annual White House Cabinet Hunger Games.”