DOT Official’s Campaign Contributions Bolstered McConnell and Kentucky

Transportation Department aide’s contributions to Kentucky politicians show even more financial support for Kentucky 

WASHINGTON – Following reports yesterday that Department of Transportation (DOT) Undersecretary Joel Szabat failed to disclose significant financial contributions to Kentucky senator Mitch McConnell, Restore Public Trust released the following statement today highlighting DOT aide Todd Inman’s numerous contributions to Kentucky politicians.

“Joel Szabat may have failed to disclose his financial contributions to his employer’s spouse, but he’s not the only one who has contributed to McConnell,” said Lizzy Price, director of Restore Public Trust. “Secretary Elaine Chao’s own ‘Kentucky liaison’ Todd Inman, who has handled McConnell’s requests for meetings with his friends and supporters and personally shepharded Kentucky projects through DOT’s grant process, has given thousands in contributions to Kentucky politicians. Chao’s unfair attention towards Kentucky, the state her husband Mitch McConnell represents in the Senate, is bad enough. But DOT officials’ financial contributions to Kentucky politicians make it obvious that the pipeline of influence between Kentucky and the Transportation Department flows even stronger than people might think.”

In his capacity as a DOT aide, Inman was assigned as a department liaison in charge of handling McConnell’s Kentucky pet projects. In recent years, Inman has donated the following amounts to Kentucky politicians and groups: 

  • $8,750 to the Republican Party of Kentucky since 2002
  • $4,000 to Senator Mitch McConnell since 2008
  • $3,500 to Representative Brett Guthrie since 2008
  • $1,250 to Senator Rand Paul since 2013

Chao’s favoritism towards Kentucky is well-documented. While the state represents only 1.3% of the U.S. population, one fourth of Chao’s meetings during her first 14 months in office were with state and local Kentucky officials.


Press Release

DOTElaine ChaoMitch McConnellPress Release

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