Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and his wife, Elaine Chao, who happens to be the Secretary of the US Department of Transportation… attended a ceremony at Harvard Business School. The ceremony, which was held in February, was in honor of a new building for Harvard’s Executive Education program named “The Ruth Mulan Chu Chao Center” — after Chao’s mother. The building was funded by a $40 million donation from the Chao family and their foundation.
While this may seem a very generous gesture, a deeper dive reveals that millions of dollars have been funneled to the Ruth Mulan Chu Chao Foundation via offshore tax havens.
Two of the entities which reportedly transferred funds to the foundation are incorporated in the Marshall Islands, “known as one of the world’s most secretive offshore havens for firms seeking to avoid taxes and a preferred foreign locale for the Foremost Group, the Chao family’s New York-based shipping business.”
Basically, the Chao family was donating funds that would have been in the public treasury, if the funds had stayed in the US and been taxed accordingly.
If those funds had remained in the US, they would have been taxed accordingly and placed in the public treasury. The Chao family was donating funds that should have been taxed.
Chao, of course, is a vociferous supporter of President Donald Trump and his economic policies — including the rewrite of the tax code. The passage of that legislation was probably the high point of her husband’s career, and shifted the corporate tax code to a territorial system. Trump’s new tax policy is expected to reward firms like the Chao family foundation which use offshore tax havens.
Are Republicans even trying to hide their greed anymore?