Transportation Secretary Chao tapped a former lobbyist to key Federal Highway Administration role
WASHINGTON – Today, it was reported that Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao will make former lobbyist Mala Parker deputy administrator of the Federal Highway Administration (FHA). She’s served as acting deputy administrator for the department since mid-August. Restore Public Trust released the following statement in response:
“Chao’s decision to tap Parker is yet another instance of her helping Trump make his administration even swampier,” said Lizzy Price, director of Restore Public Trust. “It is crucial that Parker publicly recuse herself from any decisions and rulemaking at the agency that concerns the industry she’s lobbied for in her career. The FHA is charged with keeping the public safe. The American people deserve an agency that will work to protect them, not one filled with private industry connections looking to enhance their bottom line on the taxpayer’s dollar.”
Before joining the administration as the associate administrator for Highway Policy and External Affairs in 2017, Parker was a registered lobbyist for the American Trucking Association (ATA). She also served as vice president for coalitions at ATA, where she made connections with policymakers and legislators on the group’s behalf. Prior to that, Parker served with Secretary Chao at the Department of Labor from 2002-2009.
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