Although whether or not Alabama GOP Senate candidate Roy Moore will ever face real consequences for allegedly preying on minors while in his 30s remains to be seen, there is someone who may face consequences for engaging in the race on his behalf — longtime Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway.
Conway appeared on Fox & Friends last week to address the ongoing efforts on the part of the national GOP to get a tax plan passed. During the course of her appearance on the program, show co-host Brian Kilmeade asked her if it was important enough to get the tax bill passed that she thought Alabama voters should support the credibly accused pedophile Roy Moore.
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Conway did not say no. Instead, she launched into an attack on Moore’s Democratic opponent Doug Jones.
‘I’m telling you that we want the votes in the Senate to get this tax bill though… I just want everybody to know Doug Jones, nobody ever says his name and they pretend that he’s some kind of conservative Democrat in Alabama and he’s not.’
Check out the video of Conway’s appearance on Fox advocating against Jones below.
Conway, in engaging in the Alabama Senate race in her official capacity, seemingly violated the Hatch Act, which prohibits federal employees from campaigning on behalf of or against any political candidate in their official capacity. As numerous individuals have pointed out, Conway was literally standing in front of the White House while speaking to Fox & Friends, so suggesting that she wasn’t speaking in her official capacity is ridiculous at best.
Last week, within the few days after Conway’s Fox appearance, former head of the Office of Government Ethics Walter Shaub announced that he had “filed a complaint with the U.S. Office of Special Counsel, which investigates Hatch Act violations.”
As Shaub, who resigned from his old position in protest over the lack of attention to ethics on the part of the Trump administration, originally put it on Twitter, the issue over Conway’s appearance on Fox & Friends would be a “test of POTUS’s new head of the Office of Special Counsel” to see if they will “hold Presidential appointees in this administration to the standard to which his predecessor held Presidential appointees in the last administration.”
Now, Shaub has revealed that the U.S. Office of Special Counsel is proceeding with an investigation of his complaint against Conway.
He posted a screenshot of an email he received to Twitter to that effect from the office itself, writing:
‘WH defended Conway against @CampaignLegal’s Hatch Act complaint by saying her words about Jones supported POTUS’s agenda. That’s an admission of guilt! Jones’ only relevance to POTUS is his bid for Senate, and the topic was: Does POTUS have the votes in the Senate for a tax bill.’
Chief of the Office of Special Counsel’s Hatch Act Unit Ana Galindo-Marrone wrote to Shaub:
‘We have received your Hatch Act complaint and will open a case file to address this matter.’
Check it out below.
WH defended Conway against @CampaignLegal’s Hatch Act complaint by saying her words about Jones supported POTUS’s agenda. That’s an admission of guilt! Jones’ only relevance to POTUS is his bid for Senate, and the topic was: Does POTUS have the votes in the Senate for a tax bill. pic.twitter.com/s5GJmiru5i
— Walter Shaub (@waltshaub) November 29, 2017
The White House’s principal deputy press secretary, Raj Shah, tried to defend Conway by saying that she only discussed Jones in the context of the president’s agenda, but that’s a self-defeating defense. Yes, Conway was speaking about Jones in the context of the president’s agenda; she was using the president’s agenda to advocate against a political candidate.