This is an excellent article about the time Secretary Chao spent in private meetings from 02/17-03/18, but I’m going to dig a little more deeply into the individuals she met with or called, according to her FOIA’ed schedule. (1)
It may be useful to keep this in mind. (2)
Here’s the link to the schedule. Threads are painful enough without screenshots, so I’ll simply reference dates. I may come back to expound on an entry, and please feel free to do the same.
I’ve only made it through 8/17 so far, but it’s a start. (3)
(See Crowley Maritime and China.) (5)
Duberstein is the former Reagan Chief of Staff whose firm was hired to lobby against the Magnitsky Act. (6)
1. Steve Schwarzman/Partnership for NYC (White House).
2. National Security Council principals meeting, re: U.S./China Dialogue (WH Situation Room).
3. Coffee with Ivanka Kushner. (15)
1. Meeting with GOP pollster, Frank Luntz.
2. Meeting with Mike Burke, AECOM. (See: AECOM and China)
3. Meeting with Qi Bin, EVP of China Investment Corporation (CIC).
CIC’s history with the Chao family will get its own thread. Moving on... (19)
A lot of familiar names here. Feel free to add whatever you have.
May 23, 2017: Meeting with GOP pollster, Frank Luntz; Secretary Chao’s second meeting with Luntz in 22 days.
Noteworthy here that Kushner’s private meetings with Ambassador Cui raised red flags among “some government officials.”
August 7, 2017: Meeting with Vinod Khosla of Khosla Ventures. (30)
Coincidentally, Chao’s meeting with Khosla occurred shortly after his firm and her brother in law’s firm, Breyer Capital, invested in a $65M round for Kushner brothers’ Cadre. (31)
Thiel, Breyer, Stephen Schwarzman, and Oleg Deripaska were featured in the press releases for the 2015 China Development Forum. (33)
Both Peter Thiel and Jim Breyer were featured at last October’s Future Investment Initiative in Riyadh. (34)
August 2, 2017: Meeting with former congressman, Jack Kingston.
September 1, 2017: Call with former senator, David Karnes of The Fairmont Group.
Karnes would later be appointed to an FAA advisory committee. (39)
September 12, 2017: Private dinner hosted by Brian Moynihan, Bank of America CEO. (41)
Before I forget, here’s a little more on frequent caller, Richard LeFrak. (42)
September 14, 2017: Meeting with Barry Sternlicht, chairman of Starwood Capital. (43)
-Meeting with Jose Maria Aznar.
-Meeting with Alvaro Uribe Velez.
Both Uribe and Aznar are News Corporation directors, and this was Secretary Chao’s second meeting with Aznar in six months. (44)
September 28, 2017: “Greeting (China’s) Vice Premier Liu (Yandong) and delgation.”
More on Secretary Chao and her history with Vice Premier Liu, the former head of the United Front Work Department:
Interesting information regarding the PRC-backed Confucius Institutes that Secretary Chao and former Vice Premier Liu support. (48)
This just popped up in my feed. Seems an opportune time to mention that Chinese-American real estate transactions aren’t subject to tariffs. (50)
October 4, 2017: Dinner in honor of Saudi Ambassador, Prince Khaled bin Salman. (52)
Secretary Chao was a director for Protective Life Insurance from 2011-2015. Her relationship with Fidelity isn’t clear. (54)
Secretary Chao’s friend (and the chairman of the corporation whose board her brother in law sits on) Stephen Schwarzman, meeting with al-Otaiba’s boss while serving on a Trump advisory council:
Secretary Chao’s brother in law is a Gold Patron of the “Academy of Achievement.” Al-Otaiba, David Bonderman, Francine LeFrak, and Stephen Schwarzman are Patrons. (57)
I thought the Secretary was finished with the insurance business? (59)
Note: Schwarzman was no longer a member of any Trump advisory council at this point in time, although he did watch the 2018 midterm results at the White House one year later. (60)
November 16, 2017: “Federalist Society 2017 Antonin Scalia Memorial Dinner.” The Secretary was a longtime Federalist Society advisor. (62)
November 29, 2017: Lunch with Ma Jing and Sheryl Gao of China Global Television Network.
Why a private lunch with employees of a People’s Republic of China-operated media organization—one of whom was recalled to China over security concerns? (63)
December 12, 2017: Meeting with The Related Companies; the Secretary’s second meeting with this corporation in eight months.
Within the article: “Bank of China, Deutsche Bank and Wells Fargo are putting together a five-year ($2.5B) mortgage...”
Secretary Chao’s meetings with The Related Companies are especially intriguing for me, as her sister, Angela Chao—Blackstone director Jim Breyer’s wife—is a Bank of China independent director. (65)
This may or may not refer to Confucius Institutes, which I covered earlier. (67)
January 21, 2018: Oddly missing from her schedule is Secretary Chao’s private dinner with Justice Gorsuch, Judiciary Committee member Cornyn, Senator Alexander, and “other Senate colleagues.” (69)
January 24, 2018: “Tea with Jack Ma.”
Secretary Chao’s brother in law is an acquaintance, and—like Ma—has investments in the Chinese AI space. (70)
Some Cabinet members meet media personalities for interviews; Secretary Chao meets with their leadership. (74)
February 15, 2018: “Dinner with Jared and Ivanka Kushner” (their second). Recall that the Secretary’s brother in law is a Cadre and Oscar investor. (76)
...is that Trump’s nominee to be Secretary Chao’s Assistant Secretary, Diana Furchtgott-Roth, omitted a donation to Comstock in her written nomination testimony. (79)
A few more things to touch on before I close this out...
Recall that Secretary Chao reortedly chose not to divest completely from Vulcan Materials after she resigned her directorship prior to her Senate confirmation. (82)
I noticed today that the hedge fund managed by Secretary Chao’s brother in law, Jos Shaver—from which she divested $1M-$5M prior to her confirmation—reported adding ~$11M and ~$9M in Vulcan and Golar LNG holdings, respectively, in its February filing. (83)
This is the same fund that coincidentally shed $50M in Tesla (think “green”) holdings just prior to Trump’s Paris Agreement withdrawal speech. (84)
As to LNG...and Bank of China, and China Investment Corporation:
China Investment Corporations features prominently in deals that Secretary Chao is adjacent to, from a $43B deal with Bank of China (Angela Chao, Director) for Alaska LNG... (89)
I’m very curious to know more about the nature of Secretary Chao’s many meetings with investors—many of whom have financial connections to her friends and family members; with political operatives from both China and the U.S.; with News Corporation and... (92)
Not the first mention of Barbara Comstock in the thread.
As a Congresswoman, Comstock was a member of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure.