Counselor to the president Kellyanne Conway violated the Hatch Act, a federal law that prohibits political speech in her official capacity, several times over the past year, a federal watchdog announced Thursday.
The Office of the Special Counsel recommended that Conway be removed from her position. Special Counsel Henry Kerner released a letter Thursday claiming that Conway's "disregard for the restrictions the Hatch Act places on executive branch employees is unacceptable."
The White House accused the agency of flawed reasoning and said its actions were violating Conway's right to free speech.
The special counsel laid out several occasions dating to 2017, including posts from her Twitter account @KellyannePolls and broadcast interviews, in which Conway spoke out about the 2018 midterm election and 2020 Democratic candidates. Her comments range from criticizing Former Vice President Joe Biden to calling on voters to head out to the polls in the 2018 election. She also repeatedly predicted that the president would win re-election.
Here are all the instances – places and comments – the special counsel said Conway violated the Hatch Act:
Fox News: 'What exactly have you accomplished?'
Conway, in her official capacity as a senior aide, was asked to respond to the Trump Administration's withdrawal from a nuclear pact with Russia during a Feb. 1 Fox News interview.
During the interview, Conway was also asked to give the Trump Administration's official reaction to Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., jumping into the 2020 race as a Democrat. Conway, who is a New Jersey native, questioned whether Booker was qualified and criticized him for running against a record number of women seeking the Democratic nomination for president.
"Welcome, the water seems warm. Welcome to dive in along with I don't know, 10, 15, 30 other Democratic candidates. I would ask him a couple of questions today as he runs from a native of New Jersey. One is, what's wrong with the candidates that are already in there?
"What's your objection to Kamala Harris running, Elizabeth Warren, Kirsten Gillibrand, these others who have already announced? Tulsi Gabbard, maybe," Conway said. "If he were a Republican running against them, they would immediately call him a sexist for running against these women in the Democratic field."
"But I'd also ask him what exactly have you accomplished that qualifies you to be the Commander-in-chief and President of the United States," she said.