Secretary Elaine Chao



  • Sisters Elaine and Angela Chao Attribute Their Career Success to Parental Values in Interviews

    Elaine and Angela Chao share the teachings and inspirations they received from their family, which helped them to become successful as Chinese-Americans.
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    July 23, 2015

  • Embracing her old Kentucky home

    Deep in the heart of Kentucky’s rugged Eastern Mountain region there lives a woman who has fascinated and inspired me for two decades. She is known locally these days as “Mayor Nan” — the octogenarian chief executive of Hazard and advocate for its 5,467 residents.
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    November 7, 2013

  • Procrastination no longer an option

    Asteroid deflection is a fascinating field of scientific research. The goal is to avert catastrophe by identifying threats far enough in advance that even a small nudge can alter a massive asteroid’s path sufficiently to avoid impact with Earth, allowing mankind to avoid the fate of the dinosaurs. Unfortunately, few of Washington’s political minds are as forward-thinking. Indeed, over the years they have taken the exact opposite approach to governance. Instead of modest budgetary course corrections to avoid an obvious collision between federal spending, changing demographics — most notably the aging baby boomer generation, born between 1946 and 1964 — and revenue, every administration and Congress in modern times has accelerated our nation toward the inevitable “fiscal cliff.”
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    December 5, 2012

  • Concentrate on Needs of Employers

    Toward the end of the campaign, President Obama mentioned the need for a “secretary of business” to consolidate functions such as small business loans and export assistance. Coming so late in his first term, and given that there already is a secretary of Commerce, the notion was widely lampooned. But in this notion lay the seeds of the essential truth of the president’s second term: his presidency will be judged on the success or failure of America’s private sector in creating jobs.
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    November 8, 2012

  • Winter of recovery not likely with current policies, inaction on taxes

    This December will mark the fifth anniversary of the official beginning of the recession, and the U.S. economy is exhibiting no positive momentum. According to the National Bureau of Economic Research’s official Business Cycle Dating Committee, the recession ended in June 2009. Yet three years later, the official unemployment rate is 8.2 percent, comprising 12.7 million Americans, and 42 percent of those have been out of work for longer than six months. Initial unemployment claims hover uncomfortably and persistently near the 400,000 mark that indicates a worsening job situation.
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    July 11, 2012

  • Government and Industry Must Invest

    It may be hard to believe that in this dreadful economy there are a significant number of job openings going unfilled because employers are having difficulty finding qualified applicants. This phenomenon had been a growing concern among employers and some policy makers even when the economy was booming in the last decade. The situation has been alleviated by overall growth in unemployment, but it has not disappeared.
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    July 9, 2012

  • Demand More than ‘New Normal’

    All eyes are on Friday’s employment report, with the focus apparently on whether the Obama administration can reach 200,000 a month in April. Our question is why? Why has creating 200,000 jobs become the litmus test of a successful jobs report? Given the deep jobs deficit in which our economy finds itself, we need a lot more jobs than that. In the first 24 months of the average postwar recovery from recession, the economy created 147,000 payroll jobs on average. In the first 24 months in this recovery: 52,000. The administration is fond of trumpeting the recent rise in the pace of job creation in the recovery, but to date the average is only 87,000.
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    May 3, 2012

  • Our Best Diplomats: Women in the Peace Corps

    Fifty years ago, 65 percent of the people volunteering to join the Peace Corps were men and 35 percent were women. Today, those numbers have flipped, with 66 percent of volunteers during the 2000s women and 34 percent men. This change, gradual over the five decades, represents women’s commitment to and confidence in international work and a steadiness of America’s spirit to volunteer, born three centuries ago. Of the over 4,000 women currently serving as volunteers, about 250 are over 50 years old, blogging and uploading photos for friends and relatives back home as they work in education, health, nutrition, small business, agriculture in 74 countries worldwide.
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    March 19, 2012

  • Americans Are More Generous Than We Think

    2012 is now upon us, and we know that in this year there will be more rancor (presidential election), stress (economy) and predictably unpredictable natural disasters (no reference to the Mayan calendar intended). There are many reasons to worry, the evening news is full of them. There are reasons for optimism, but you have to dig deeper these past few years to find them. Or you can Google “layaway angels” and read one reason after another why we should have faith in our society’s future.
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    January 5, 2012

  • Remembering Pearl Harbor

    Sacrifices of 70 years ago enshrined in National World War II Museum
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    December 6, 2011

  • The Best Recession Protection: Education

    Why a college degree is still the best protection against unemployment.
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    November 29, 2011

  • America’s jobless ask: Where’s the recovery?

    The recession that officially began in December 2007 officially ended in June 2009. Yet today’s graduates face a dismal job market.
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    July 21, 2011

  • All Americans Need 401(k) Loan Insurance

    For the past three decades, 401(k) tax-deferred savings accounts have assumed an increasingly significant role in retirement planning for an estimated 100 million American workers and their families.
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    June 7, 2011

  • Statement on the passing of Matthew K. Fong, American Patriot and National Leader

    Elaine Chao comments on the passing of Matthew K. Fong
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    June 2, 2011

  • Government by Executive Order

    A new Labor Department plan shows the president still has wide power to implement an anti-business agenda.
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    December 3, 2010

  • A Day of Reckoning for Public Pensions: The bills are due, the coffers are empty

    A number of recent studies conclude that federal workers earn 20 to 30 percent more per hour than their private sector counterparts. And where local, state, and federal government workers really come out ahead isn’t just in pay; it’s in the benefits. Most private sector workers can only dream of getting the generous lifetime pension and health benefits typical of government service.
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    October 1, 2010

  • Another Unhappy Labor Day

    Americans are aware of the folly of Washington's economic policies.
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    September 2, 2010

  • How to Get America Back to Work

    There was little to cheer in Friday’s unemployment report, other than the fact that there have been worse in the past year. But the unemployment figures are not going to get much better unless and until policymakers in Washington acknowledge that jobs lost do not automatically bounce back—especially not in the face of a still-tight credit market and actions in Washington that, however well-intentioned, would dissuade the hiring of new workers.
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    January 10, 2010

  • A Return to Prosperity is Light Years Away if we Follow Obama's Road map

    A return to prosperity is light years away if we follow Obama’s road map
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    September 7, 2009

  • Lef-Wing Proxy Playz

    Ploys to politically micromanage companies.
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    August 16, 2009

  • Obama Tries to Stop Union Disclosure

    No more sunshine on how worker dues are spent.
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    May 6, 2009

  • Topic A - The Next 100 Days

    As the president is making the federal government do more, he should also direct it to do better and with less.
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    April 26, 2009

  • Topic A - The Employee Free Choice Act

    Workers would have no choice -- and no ability to cast a private ballot on unionization of their workplace -- if just one more than half of workers signed pro-union cards. These union-funded signature drives can entail entreaties at workers' homes and other places where workers are vulnerable to harassment and intimidation.
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    April 12, 2009

  • Anti-Trade Agenda a Real Economy Killer

    Today it is apparent that some in Washington have forgotten that history or never bothered to learn it. Lawmakers at home, as well as abroad, are embracing protectionism for the 21st Century that threatens to make an already severe economic crisis even worse.
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    April 10, 2009

  • Two Steps Back on Labor Rights

    The Obama administration's zeal to not "waste a good crisis," as Secretary of State Hillary Clinton put it, has been stunning even for Washington insiders to behold. In the first 50 days of Barack Obama's presidency, Congress approved $1.2 trillion dollars in new spending, or $24 billion a day.
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    March 21, 2009

  • Will Obama's Labor Department Help or Hinder Recovery?

    When President-elect Obama initially announced his economic team, one important player was conspicuously absent: the U.S. Department of Labor.
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    January 1, 2009

  • The Coming Assaults on America's Competitiveness

    As the Congress gets underway in 2009, its leaders are going to be under enormous pressure to bow to the priorities of labor union leaders and other special interest groups.
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    December 1, 2008

  • Defining Democracy Down

    It goes without saying in American households and has been ratified by the civilized world in human rights declarations, that privacy in the casting of an election ballot is a fundamental freedom.
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    July 20, 2007

  • Secret Ballot Under Fire for American Worker

    Voter privacy is a fundamental human right.
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    March 1, 2007

  • Helping America's Remarkable Workforce Meet its Challenges

    Chao: Helping America’s remarkable workforce meet its challenges
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    September 27, 2005

  • Utilize Some Well-Trained Talent; Give a Returning Veteran a Job

    On Labor Day, we pause to celebrate and remember the contributions of America's work force to our nation.
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    September 5, 2005

  • Honoring Promises Made to Workers

    Working hard and “playing by the rules” has for generations of Americans been the guiding ethic for leading an honorable life and attaining financial security.
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    February 15, 2005

  • We Must Win Fight Against Aids

    On Wednesday - World AIDS Day - men and women all around the globe will renew their commitment to fighting one of the most wrenching humanitarian tragedies of our time: the HIV pandemic that is destroying the lives of 38 million people.
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    November 29, 2004

  • New Overtime Rules Protect U.S. Workers

    Overtime pay matters to American workers and their families, and as of Monday, millions more of them gained overtime rights.
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    August 24, 2004

  • Women Becoming a Powerful Voice

    Sometimes hope can be found in small gestures - particularly ideas or symbols that inspire others to believe that their dreams can become reality.
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    March 15, 2004

  • Challenges in Africa

    The tall, shy young boy came up to me and asked simply to shake my hand.
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    February 1, 2004

  • A Chance for Health Care Coverage

    As Americans observe Labor Day, it is appropriate to remember the many strides that have been made on behalf of America's workers.
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    September 1, 2003