Mark Meadows downplays RNC Hatch Act concerns
White House chief of staff Mark Meadows on Wednesday downplayed concerns that Republican National Convention events staged at the White House potentially violated the Hatch Act during a Politico virtual event.
Why it matters: The Hatch Act prevents executive branch employees from engaging in partisan political activity, though it does not apply to the president and vice president. Previous administrations have avoided hosting campaign-style events at the White House in order to separate politics from governing.
What he's saying: "Nobody outside of the Beltway really cares. They expect that Donald Trump is going to promote Republican values, and they would expect that Barack Obama, when he was in office, that he would do the same for Democrats," Meadows said.
- "This is a lot of hoopla that's being made about things, mainly because the convention has been so unbelievably successful."
Worth noting: Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-Texas) is launching an investigation into whether Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's address to the convention violated the Hatch Act.
Flashback: In June 2019, the Office of Special Counsel found that White House counselor Kellyanne Conway violated the Hatch Act by "disparaging Democratic presidential candidates while speaking in an official capacity during television interviews and on social media" and recommended firing her.
- Conway ignored a subpoena from the House Ethics Committee to testify in connection with the violations.