White House counselor Kellyanne Conway on Wednesday dismissed a government office’s findings that she violated the Hatch Act, a decades-old law barring officials from weighing in on elections in their government capacity when she attacked Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden’s record.
Conway ripped into Biden while fielding questions from reporters outside the White House on Tuesday. Trump’s counselor insisted she was not commenting on the 2020 election and that she has a right to weigh in on the record of her boss’s potential 2020 opponent.
“I’m going to talk about people’s records because I have the right to,” Conway said on Thursday.
“I’m not concerned about Joe Biden,” she added. “I’m concerned about the failures of the last administration to deal with the issues of the day, including North Korea.”
When reporters noted the Office of Special Counsel (OSC) found she violated the Hatch Act with two interviews she gave in late 2017, Conway brushing off the charge.
“Blah, blah, blah,” she said as one reporter recounted the OSC’s findings.
“If you’re trying to silence me through the Hatch Act, it’s not going to work,” Conway said.
“Let me know when the jail sentence starts,” she added.
The Hill reports:
The OSC — an entity separate from special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation — determined in March 2018 that Conway had violated the Hatch Act with two separate interviews related to the Alabama Senate special election in 2017.
The report cited interviews Conway gave in her official capacity to “Fox & Friends” on Fox News and “New Day” on CNN in which she described then-candidate Doug Jones as “weak on crime” and a likely vote against Trump-backed tax cuts. Jones went on to defeat Roy Moore.
The OSC referred its findings to President Trump “for appropriate disciplinary action.”
However, the White House maintained at the time Conway had done nothing wrong, saying she did not explicitly tell viewers which candidate to vote for.
Watchdog organization Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) tweeted on Thursday: “We had to file another Hatch Act complaint against Kellyanne Conway.”
We had to file another Hatch Act complaint against Kellyanne Conway. https://t.co/EYSaRGBR34
— Citizens for Ethics (@CREWcrew) May 29, 2019