Ivanka Trump accused of ‘violating critical ethics law’ eight times in two days by US watchdog

Hatch Act limits certain political activities of federal employees

Louise Hall
Wednesday 21 October 2020 10:29
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Ivanka Trump has been accused of breaking ethics regulations eight times in the space of two days on Twitter by a United States watchdog.

Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) claimed that Ms Trump who is a senior advisor to the president, broke the Hatch Act numerous times.

The watchdog criticises Ms Trump for eight tweets from 11 October to 13 October in which she promoted her father’s re-election campaign.

In the tweets, Ms Trump details her movement on the Trump campaign trail and speaks positively of his term as president and confidently stating that certain states will support his reelection.

“Headed back to the great state of Arizona to campaign for @realDonaldTrump this Sunday!,” she says in one.

“Barnstorming the Fox Cities today! The great people of Wisconsin delivered for @RealDonaldTrump in 2016 and will do it again!!,” she wrote in another.

The watchdog argues that the eight tweets are in violation of the act and she is “using her official position to push a partisan agenda.”

The president’s daughter’s twitter bio reads: “Advisor to POTUS on job creation + economic empowerment, workforce development & entrepreneurship. Personal Pg Views are my own”

“Ivanka Trump using her @IvankaTrump account for political as well as government business suggests that she is using government resources like her time, title, and position to boost campaign messages,” CREW wrote in the post last Tuesday.

​​​The White House and the Trump campaign did not immediately respond to The Independent's request for comment.

The Hatch Act, passed in 1939, limits certain political activities of federal employees to ensure “federal employees are advanced based on merit and not based on political affiliation”. 

It also prohibits employees from coercing or pressuring other employees from taking part in political activity and makes sure that federal programs are administered in a nonpartisan fashion.

Violations can be as small as a tweet sent from an official account and can result in consequences like termination, or even a fine.

A number of members of Mr Trump’s administration have been accused of violating the act in the past on different occasions including former White House counsellor Kellyanne Conway.

The US Office of Special Counsel recommended in 2019 that Ms Conway be removed from office for violating the US ethics laws ”on numerous occasions”.

However, since violations of the Hatch Act are generally enforced by the president, no members of the administration have faced consequences for the alleged violations.

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