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Mitch McConnell’s rich connection with China

Secret Empires Book

Peter Schweizer: How the American Political Class Hides Corruption and Enriches Family and Friends

Mitch McConnell is the powerbroker of the US Senate, but he’s also a guy whose in-laws own a major shipping company that buys container ships from a Chinese Government company. The in-laws make money from carrying goods back and forward in deals with Chinese State Owned companies.

McConnell’s wife is a Chinese-American and also happens to be The Transportation Secretary of the US Government (!). Since Elaine Chao took up that job four years ago, her fathers company has expanded rapidly and has added 40 percent more ships. Her father, James Chao, is a shipping magnate that gave his daughter and her husband McConnell a gift of at least $5 million in 2008. That’s the conservative estimate — it might have been worth as much as $25 million dollars. (Nice in-laws if you can get them.) The largess was legally disclosed. The net worth of the political couple went from $3m in 2004 to something between $9 and $36m by 2018.

The Chinese Ship building company is called CSSC Holdings. McConnell’s wife’s family is so close to it that both her father and her sister sit on the Board of the financial arm of this Chinese company they buy boats from. It’s odd, stacked on weird, wrapped up in long explanations. CSSC is not just a boat building company, it’s the Chinese government’s military contractor. Indeed, the letters CSSC stand for the China State Shipbuilding Corporation. Get it?

Mitch McConnell and his wife Elaine Chao

Mitch McConnell and his wife Elaine Chao | Image Wikimedia

In another odd coincidence, just ten days after Donald Trump was elected in 2016, Elaine Chao’s sister Angela  was appointed to another board of Directors  —  the Communist Chinese government’s Bank of China.

McConnells wife Elaine Chao and her father-the-shipping-magnate are lauded in China and do interviews on Chinese TV in Chinese. They are promoted as  “lifting the status of Asian-Americans in America” often with little Dept of Transport flags in the background. This probably doesn’t do any harm to James Chao’s business.

Perhaps the oddest thing of all is that all this information came out in 2018. That’s when Peter Schweizer’s best selling book was published and the news was shared in  Politico the Wall St Journal, and Breitbart among other places. Yet, Mitch McConnell is still the man elected again in 2020 to lead the US Senate.

Perhaps all this is old news to US citizens. It’s presumably all legal, if not necessarily very ethical, or desirable. But it may help Australian readers understand Mitch McConnell and a bit more about US politics.

From Schweisers Book, as discussed by Sam Di Gangi at Conservative Daily Post

Schwizer shows how McConnell’s “financial ties to the Chinese government as an example of how politicians monetize political influence while evading financial disclosure regulations.”

Showing the depth of the problem, Schwizer also said, “The China State Shipbuilding Corporation is the largest defense contractor in China, and the projections are that by 2030, if current trends continue, they are going to surpass the U.S. Navy as far as naval capability. Basically, what happens is, the China State Shipbuilding Corporation says to the Chao family, ‘Look, we will build your ships. We will finance the purchase of some of your ships. We will provide crews for your ships. We will provide contracts for you to ship state-owned goods from state-owned companies around the Pacific. In other words, we are going to set you up in the shipping business,’ which is exactly what they do, and, in fact, James Chao — this would be Elaine Chao’s father, Mitch McConnell’s father-in-law — and Elaine’s sister, Angela Chao, actually joined the board, in 2007 and 2008, of something called China State Shipbuilding Corporation, CSSC Holdings, which is a subsidiary of the largest defense contractor in China.

He warned, “So you have this powerful American political family that is making U.S. policy related to China, related to trade, and other critical issues that is highly dependent upon the good graces of the Chinese government.”

The author also feels that this is why McConnell is “increasingly soft” on China, even as they boast about conquering the economic world within three decades.

If Mitch McConnell supported Trump and by default, harsher trade deals with China, it might be bad news for his father-in-laws business.

Secret Empires is Peter Schweizer’s fifth consecutive New York Times bestselling investigative book.



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