Day 1,294: In more norm shattering, Trump floats giving RNC speech from the White House
The White House, as a building, has historically remained away from politics and campaigning by its occupants. The idea is that a President of the United States — the entire United States — works there, lives there and represents all Americans. Therefore it would be untoward to host political events that would alienate millions of Americans using the building or grounds as a backdrop.
With a toe in the water, Trump now appears ready to jump in. He confirmed Wednesday that he’s considering giving his acceptance speech for the Republican nomination from the White House.
“I’ll probably do mine live from the White House,” Trump told “Fox & Friends” of his nomination acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention later this month, adding that he had not officially settled on a location for the prime-time remarks.
The fact that he’s giving any thought to such a flagrantly political event is brazen and on-brand.
Even the Senate Majority Whip, among other Republicans, was left scratching his head about the decision and questioning the legality of it.
When Trump was asked about Thune’s comments at a press briefing later, Trump didn’t seem to understand that Thune, the No. 2 Senate Republican behind Mitch McConnell, was a Republican.
While it wouldn’t technically be illegal for Trump to give a political speech from the White House, it would be a Hatch Act violation for all other federal employees planning the event or in attendance.
Legal experts said White House staff would violate the federal Hatch Act by planning or participating in such an event. The Hatch Act bars U.S. government employees from conducting any political activities during work hours, while in a government building or while wearing a government uniform.
More norms eroding, more laws being broken. Just another day in the Trump administration.
1,294 days in, 168 to go
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