Kellyanne Conway should be removed from federal office, Office of Special Counsel says

The Washington Post

Counselor to the President Kellyanne Conway (Andrew Harnik/AP)

The Office of Special Counsel has recommended the removal of White House counselor Kellyanne Conway from federal office for violating the Hatch Act, which bars federal employees from engaging in political activity in the course of their work.

The report submitted to President Trump found that Conway violated the Hatch Act on numerous occasions by “disparaging Democratic presidential candidates while speaking in her official capacity during television interviews and on social media.”

The counsel said Conway was a repeat offender and recommended that she be removed from federal office.

The Office of Special Counsel is charged with enforcing the Hatch Act and is not to be confused with now-former special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s investigation. The office is run by Henry Kerner, whom Trump nominated to the post.

The White House responded by arguing that the special counsel’s actions against Conway “are deeply flawed and violate her constitutional rights to free speech and due process.”

“Others, of all political views, have objected to the OSC’s unclear and unevenly applied rules which have a chilling effect on free speech for all federal employees,” deputy White House press secretary Steven Groves said in a statement. “Its decisions seem to be influenced by media pressure and liberal organizations, and perhaps OSC should be mindful of its own mandate to act in a fair, impartial, nonpolitical manner, and not misinterpret or weaponize the Hatch Act.”

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