Despite White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre’s warning that using the term “MAGA Republicans” is a breach of the Hatch Act, the White House is reportedly stubbornly continuing to use it.
In a letter released only yesterday, the independent Office of Special Counsel claimed that Jean-Pierre had broken the Hatch Act by making a reference to “mega MAGA Republican officials who don’t believe in the rule of law” at a briefing in November.
Jean-Pierre received a warning letter from the organization, but no further disciplinary action was suggested.
On Tuesday reporters grilled Jean-Pierre about the allegation, question to which Jean-Pierre responded:
“So let me just lay — lay this down. I’m really glad that you asked the question. I know there’s been many news reports on this.
So as — we’ve made very clear throughout our time in this administration that we do everything that we can to uphold, certainly, the Hatch Act and take the law very seriously…
We received a letter from the Office of Special Counsel, which is the independent agency that enforces the Hatch Act, as all of you know, and it communicated to us that — their opinion and — issuing a warning, but not taking further action. As you all know by reading the letter and the reports, the White House Counsel’s Office is reviewing their opinion and is going to respond to them.
So, now, if you — if you look at the archived Trump White House website, it contains about 2,000 — nearly 2,000 uses of “MAGA” to describe policies and official agendas. Congressional Republicans have also used “MAGA” to refer to policies and official agenda frequently, for years now — even, clearly, before we entered the administration.
So, look, when — basically, what we’re seeing by me laying that out is that we did not know their opinion when we were able to use — to — we were be- — when we — when we were given the green light to actually say the comments that I made. So I just want to make that very clear.
But again, look, it’s going to be reviewed. That’s what the White House Counsel is going to do. They’re going to have a dialogue, a routine dialogue with a OC- — OSC. And so, I’ll just leave it there.”
It appears that the White House Counsel’s Office, however, has now officially chosen to disregard the OSC’s warning as it just issued a new memo from the White House Deputy Press Secretary entitled “Memo: House Republicans want to uproot President Biden’s successful middle class economics agenda with MAGA tax welfare for the rich.”
It remains unclear when or if officially moves will be made against the Biden White House for its apparent violation of the act.