What is the hatch law? Explaining Kleinen Conway controversy

A federal agency recommended the firing of President Trump's advisor, but the White House did not agree. Here is a look at the law of 1939 which prohibits the political activity of government employees.

The Office of the Special Council of the United States issued a report on Thursday's recommendation that President Trump's assistant Kleinen Conway was fired for "continuous, infamous and intentional violation of the Hatch Act".

The Trump administration did not comply. White House lawyer, Pat A. Cipoleon replied in a letter that the Office of the Special Councils on Ms. Conway was based on "many serious, legal, factual and procedural errors".

This is what you should know about

What does the law mean?

Hatch prohibits federal employees from participating in political activities. Former Senator Carl A. Hoch, nominated by the Democrats of New Mexico, the law has been on books for over 80 years.

This act goes back to the reforms of the Depression-era, with the aim of curbing machine policies, in which sponsorship jobs were given to those people who used to use their positions to help keep their customers in power. The Act has been amended several times.

"This is about treating similar treatment and partisan activity from the federal government," said Catholic University law professor at Catholic University in St. Louis and a governmental ethics lawyer.

What is a special consulting office?

It is an independent agency that enforces the civil service laws governing the federal workforce. The agency is currently headed by special adviser Henry Korner, who was appointed by President Trump in 2017.

Regardless of its name, the agency has nothing to do with the former Special Counseling Office, headed by Robert S. Muller III, who had probed potential relationships between the Trump Campaign and the Russian government during 2016.

How many times have the Hatch Law been implemented?

Ms. Conway, who served as one of the campaign's main choices in the race for 2016, is the first presidential appointment to face criticism by Hatch Law.

In 2017, the Office of the Special Counsel concluded that the White House social network director Dan Skavino Jr. violated the law when he asked for the defeat of Rep. Justin Amash in the Republic of Michigan on Twitter.

In 2012, Secretary of Health and Human Services Keithlin Sebelius apologized for partial comments made to a gay rights group in North Carolina, in which he pre-polled former president Barack Obama's election, violating the law. to the office.

Secretary of the House of Housing and Urban Development and candidate for 2020 Democratic nomination Julian Castro avoided punishment for the violation of the Hatch Act of 2016 due to the support of Hillary Clinton.

Members of the Mr. Obama Cabinet were later stopped from speaking at the 2016 Democratic National Convention

George W. The White House of Bush faced its own problems, with the Office of the Special Council, who decided that the Office of Political Affairs, which was supervised by Karl Rowe, the cabinet members of the coordinates of the Republican candidates for political meetings Appear during 2006 Intermediate Elections

Professor Jonathan Turley, a law professor at George Washington University who once taught Ms. Conway, said that the previous administration had restrictions on the Hatch Act, but generally the office's findings were given attention.

"There is no doubt that Kylian Conway has violations of Hatch Law," he said. "There is a difference: instead of a compliance record, this administration has a history of open disregard."

How has the loan been adapted for the social network age?

In 2018, the office developed social media guidelines for the political sector, Ms. Clarke said.

Professor Clark said, "One of those areas, where it gets slightly gray, is in social media accounts."

"You have to separate the government's activity from partisan political activity," he said.

Legal experts feel that they agree that Mrs. Conway's Twitter feed did not have a difference between politics and politics.

"Turley often presented references to political candidates and individuals in terms of their candidacy," said Professor Turley.

Has anyone ever been fired for violation of Hatch?

Professor Turley said that he does not know any examples in modern politics. He will depend on the president.

"It is very strange," he said.