OSC Hits Feds on Both Sides of the Aisle With Hatch Act Violations

“These two cases are examples of how government agencies can work together to ensure partisan politics stay out of the federal workplace,” said Special Counsel Carolyn Lerner. “These two cases are examples of how government agencies can work together to ensure partisan politics stay out of the federal workplace,” said Special Counsel Carolyn Lerner. Congressional Subcommittee on Oversight and Reform

Boosting or trashing a presidential candidate while on the job has landed two federal employees in hot water, the Office of Special Counsel announced on Tuesday in a release on violations of the Hatch Act.

An unidentified Federal Election Commission attorney reached a settlement and resigned in April after his agency referred to the governmentwide special counsel and the FEC inspector general evidence that the employee had posted “dozens of partisan political tweets, including many soliciting campaign contributions to President Obama’s 2012 reelection campaign and other political campaigns.”

The employee, who admitted to the violations, also participated in a Huffington Post Live webcam broadcast from an FEC facility, during which he criticized the Republican Party and then-presidential candidate Mitt Romney.

Under the settlement, the attorney is barred from seeking federal employment for two years.

In the second case, a civilian Air Force employee while on duty sent “numerous partisan political emails using a government account to a list of as many as 60 federal employees” in the months leading up to the 2012 election, the OSC reported. All were “in opposition” to the candidacy of President Obama and the Democratic Party. The emails continued even after the employee was warned by his supervisors to stop, and the employee confirmed awareness that the behavior violated the Hatch Act and that an investigation had been launched.

The behavior had prompted complaints of a “poor work ethic” to supervisors from co-workers, one of whom asked to be transferred to another office.

The employee received a 40-day suspension without pay.

“These two cases are examples of how government agencies can work together to ensure partisan politics stay out of the federal workplace,” said Special Counsel Carolyn Lerner, in a statement.

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Sponsored by G Suite

    Cross-Agency Teamwork, Anytime and Anywhere

    Dan McCrae, director of IT service delivery division, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

    Download
  • Data-Centric Security vs. Database-Level Security

    Database-level encryption had its origins in the 1990s and early 2000s in response to very basic risks which largely revolved around the theft of servers, backup tapes and other physical-layer assets. As noted in Verizon’s 2014, Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR)1, threats today are far more advanced and dangerous.

    Download
  • Federal IT Applications: Assessing Government's Core Drivers

    In order to better understand the current state of external and internal-facing agency workplace applications, Government Business Council (GBC) and Riverbed undertook an in-depth research study of federal employees. Overall, survey findings indicate that federal IT applications still face a gamut of challenges with regard to quality, reliability, and performance management.

    Download
  • PIV- I And Multifactor Authentication: The Best Defense for Federal Government Contractors

    This white paper explores NIST SP 800-171 and why compliance is critical to federal government contractors, especially those that work with the Department of Defense, as well as how leveraging PIV-I credentialing with multifactor authentication can be used as a defense against cyberattacks

    Download
  • Toward A More Innovative Government

    This research study aims to understand how state and local leaders regard their agency’s innovation efforts and what they are doing to overcome the challenges they face in successfully implementing these efforts.

    Download
  • From Volume to Value: UK’s NHS Digital Provides U.S. Healthcare Agencies A Roadmap For Value-Based Payment Models

    The U.S. healthcare industry is rapidly moving away from traditional fee-for-service models and towards value-based purchasing that reimburses physicians for quality of care in place of frequency of care.

    Download
  • GBC Flash Poll: Is Your Agency Safe?

    Federal leaders weigh in on the state of information security

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.