The IRS appears to have had numerous problems with employees campaigning for Barack Obama during the last presidential election–and most of the cases are below the public’s radar.
The Hatch Act allows most federal employees to participate in some partisan political activity. The new rule issued by OPM reflects the less stringent penalties and loosening of Hatch Act restrictions on many feds.
Political passion during an election cycle continues to embroil employees who put their federal careers at risk by engaging in prohibited political activity. Here are two new cases, involving both sides of the partisan political divide.
An investigation by the Office of Special Counsel has found evidence of political campaigning for President Obama by IRS employees at a time when the agency did not need more publicity regarding campaigning and actions on behalf of one political party over another.
Two recent Hatch Act violations serve as a reminder to federal employees about risks to their jobs during an election season. Some federal employees are even subject to violations outside of the office.
The Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB) continues to order significant penalties for federal employees who violate the Hatch Act. In the most recent Hatch Act decision, the MSPB upheld the decision of an administrative law judge, which ordered an employee removed from his federal employment.
This fervent supporter of Barack Obama was removed for exhorting others while she was at work to support her candidate.
A candidate for partisan elected position was hired for a federal job after he had declared himself as a candidate. He was fired from the Department of Labor job and the case went to federal court.
A NASA employee is hit with a suspension of 180 days as a result of violating the Hatch Act. With election season already upon us, and another five months to go before the election, federal employees need to think and understand restrictions on political activity before putting their careers in jeopardy.