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Sat Aug 29, 2020, 06:12 PM

There was nothing unlawful or improper about Trump's acceptance speech

It's disappointing that I have to say this, but this not my opinion. My posting the article here is not an indication of agreement. I disagree a lot. Laurence Tribe and Walter Shaub will be alone soon enough to point out the flaws.

mahatmakanejeeves

There was nothing unlawful or improper about Trump's acceptance speech
BY DAVID B. RIVKIN, JR. AND LEE A. CASEY, OPINION CONTRIBUTORS — 08/29/20 05:00 PM EDT
THE VIEWS EXPRESSED BY CONTRIBUTORS ARE THEIR OWN AND NOT THE VIEW OF THE HILL

The talking heads and pundits attacking President Trump for giving his Republican National Convention acceptance speech from the White House lawn need to actually read the law. The Hatch Act is a precisely written statute — as is appropriate for a law that limits the indisputable First Amendment rights of federal workers — and it supports the president.

First and foremost, the Hatch Act explicitly exempts the president and vice president from its strictures. It defines “employee,” to which the Hatch Act’s restrictions apply, as someone “other than the President or Vice President.” This is constitutionally required because the president is a co-equal branch of the federal government and Congress can no more limit or restrain his political activities than he could limit theirs.

As a result, President Trump was entirely within his legal rights to give his acceptance speech from the South Lawn of the White House. And any members of the White House staff who may have assisted and supported the president on Thursday night also were in compliance with the Hatch Act.

Although the Hatch Act prohibits a wide swath of federal workers — including many of the individuals who work in the White House — from engaging in political activities while on duty or “in any room or building occupied,” the White House lawn is not such a room or building. Had Congress intended to extend Hatch Act restrictions to entire government installations or compounds, it could and would have said so.

In addition, there is a further exemption from the relevant Hatch Act restrictions for White House staff members whose work and responsibilities continue beyond normal working hours and while on travel — which includes many if not most of them. These individuals are permitted to engage in political activities while on duty and in a federal room or building, as long as “the costs associated with that political activity are not paid for by money derived from the Treasury of the United States.” The president has stated that the Republican National Committee would be picking up the tab for his White House event (and the fireworks afterwards).

{snip}

David B. Rivkin Jr. and Lee A. Casey practice appellate and constitutional law in Washington. They served in the White House Counsel’s Office and Justice Department under Presidents Reagan and George H.W. Bush.

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Reply There was nothing unlawful or improper about Trump's acceptance speech (Original post)
mahatmakanejeeves Aug 2020 OP
Laelth Aug 2020 #1
Midnight Writer Aug 2020 #2
BKDem Aug 2020 #3
Laelth Aug 2020 #5
BKDem Aug 2020 #6
Me. Aug 2020 #4
greenjar_01 Aug 2020 #7
mahatmakanejeeves Aug 2020 #8

Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Sat Aug 29, 2020, 06:17 PM

1. True, but what about McEnanny's speech?

What about Pompeo’s speech? Those were both clear violations of the Hatch Act, and they were both authorized by the President making him (at the very least) an accessory to those crimes.

Let’s not pretend that the entire RNC didn’t both violate the law and thumb its nose at the law. It did, and it was an intentional display of lawlessness.

-Laelth

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Sat Aug 29, 2020, 06:18 PM

2. Follow the money. Trump will not pay squat. He never does. Don't take his word for anything.

But I agree it is a moot point, legally, because there is no governing authority that will hold Trump responsible.

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Sat Aug 29, 2020, 06:22 PM

3. OK, so maybe it's not illegal.

Maybe it’s not even important.

But only a no-class pig like Donald Trump would do it.

“What’s that building behind me called?”

It’s a place of honor that not even your nauseating stench can diminish, Donald.

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Response to BKDem (Reply #3)

Sat Aug 29, 2020, 06:33 PM

5. Don't let the OP fool you.

Trump’s speech (alone) may not have been illegal. Pence’s speech probably wasn’t illegal for the same reason, but McEnnany’s speech was definitely illegal, and so was Pompeo’s. Trump authorized those speeches. As such, he is, at the very least, an accessory to those crimes.

Don’t be fooled into believing that the RNC didn’t break the law. It did, and it did so in a brazen fashion. The article quoted in the OP may be technically correct, but it’s underlying purpose is to gaslight you and others.

-Laelth

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Response to Laelth (Reply #5)

Sat Aug 29, 2020, 06:53 PM

6. Thanks, but...

I know all the little fascists and the RNC are guilty of Hatch Act violations, and they love rubbing our noses in it. My point is, along with Trump and Pence, they are all manifestly guilty of vastly worse offenses. Like separating families and caging children. Like voter suppression and crippling the USPS. Like...oh, you know. It’s a horrifying list. They are monsters.

If anyone can jail some of these creeps for the Hatch Act, I will applaud them. But it will be symbolic, like Capone going down for tax evasion. I’ll take it, but it won’t be entirely satisfying.

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Sat Aug 29, 2020, 06:27 PM

4. THe Entire Sham Was A Disgrace, An Insult To OUR House & THe Presidency

and I accede no credibility to that hawk Rivkin

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Sat Aug 29, 2020, 09:32 PM

7. Dioes MJ ever post anything other than employment numbers and conservative bullshit?

It's truly unbelievable.

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Response to greenjar_01 (Reply #7)

Sun Aug 30, 2020, 06:50 AM

8. You forgot Slim Whitman's birthday.

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