Ryan Zinke’s Loud Donald Trump Campaign Socks Broke The Law
Wild socks worn to an official event by former Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke were not only in questionable taste, they also broke the law.
It’s a violation of the Hatch Act for most federal employees to use their position to promote partisan politics. Zinke’s colorful socks featured an image of President Donald Trump with Trump’s campaign slogan, “Make America Great Again.” Zinke wore them last June during an official visit to Mount Rushmore. He also tweeted a close-up photo of them at the time, quipping: “Breaking in new socks on a hike with the governors.”
“Because Secretary Zinke wore these socks to an official event and also authorized their display on his official Twitter account, he violated the Hatch Act’s prohibition against using his official position to influence an election,” Ana Galindo-Marrone, head of the Hatch Act unit of the U.S. Office of Special Counsel, concluded in a letter.
Zinke deleted the tweet and apologized after complaints.
Galindo-Marrone’s letter to the Campaign for Accountability, which had filed the Hatch Act complaint against Zinke, was issued shortly after Zinke’s announcement in December that he would resign amid several ongoing ethics investigations.
The letter was first reported last week by The Washington Post.