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HHS Secretary Sebelius cited for violating Hatch Act

by | Sep 13, 2012

By Dave Andrusko

Pro-abortion President Barack Obama and Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius.

The Office of Special Counsel (OSC) announced on Wednesday that it is citing Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius for violating  federal law–the Hatch Act—by making political comments at an official event. The OSC is an independent government agency which can investigate and prosecute.

“Public officials are allowed to make political statements on their own time, but the OSC determined that Sebelius was appearing at the event in her capacity as HHS secretary,” The Hill’s Sam Baker reported.

“The counsel found that she made the comments when delivering the keynote speech at the Human Rights Campaign Gala in February,” CNN reported. “After the apparent Hatch Act violation emerged, her office reclassified the trip from official to political and she reimbursed the government for associated expenses.”

Sebelius  conceded she had made a mistake but argued in a letter to the OSC , “If there was a violation of the Hatch Act based on the use of my title, I believe the violation was technical and minor.”

According to the OSC report, in her speech to the Human Rights Campaign Gala, Sebelius said, “One of the imperatives is to make sure that we not only come together here in Charlotte to present the nomination to the president, but we make sure that in November, he continues to be president for another four years.”

Baker reports that Sebelius also “ventured into state politics,” urging defeat of a ballot proposal. She added it’s “hugely important to make sure that we reelect the president and elect a Democratic governor here in North Carolina,” according to the OSC report.

The report specifies that it now goes to President Obama for “appropriate action.”

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Categories: Politics