Biden’s top aide is admonished for violating the Hatch Act

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden’s chief of staff broke the law He was sent a warning letter after retweeting a political message on his government Twitter account and according to a memo from the special counsel’s office. Top aide Ron Klein “got it wrong this time” and will be more careful, the White House said Thursday.

The memo, dated Wednesday, said Klein violated the Hatch Act, which prohibits government officials from using their official roles to influence elections, including supporting candidates while acting in their official capacities. On May 22, Klein retweeted a message from the Democratic group Strike PAC to distribute baby formula to Americans. But the message said, “Give your Democrats the goods today!” It also included the encouragement of

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Klein removed the retweet shortly after being notified of the complaint. No disciplinary action will follow, and the office, an independent government watchdog that monitors violations of the Hatch Act, considers the matter closed. Klein was warned to be more careful in the future.

The conservative legal group America First Legal, led by Donald Trump counsel Stephen Miller, complained about the tweet and called for an investigation.

Miller and at least a dozen other former Trump administration officials repeatedly violated the same law.The Office of Special Counsel found in 2021, without consequence and with Trump’s approval, as part of the “deliberate disregard for the Hatch Act.” The office investigated the comments of Trump officials leading up to the 2020 presidential election, including at the Republican National Convention. , was held at the White House in a major break from historical norms.

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White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said: “We’re not perfect, but our violations are few.”

“Ron is very careful and takes the Hatch Act very seriously in his media appearances and use of Twitter, but this time he got it wrong,” she said. “He corrected it as soon as he pointed it out and issued a warning to be more careful.”

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Jean-Pierre often cites the Hatch Act when deflecting political issues during news conferences. She was asked earlier this week if Biden would do everything he could to get Democrats across the finish line in the Nov. 8 election.

“I have to be careful what I say because we respect the Hatch Act here in this administration,” she said.

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