Contribute
CONNECT:

research

The Political Cabinet

- February 3, 2014

FORMER LABOR SECRETARY HILDA SOLIS FACED FEDERAL INQUIRY OVER HER INVOLVEMENT IN A FUNDRAISER FOR OBAMA’S REELECTION CAMPAIGN

In 2012, Former U.S. Labor Secretary Hilda Solis – Who Is Now Running For A Seat On The Los Angeles County Board Of Supervisors – Faced A Federal Inquiry For Her Involvement In A Fundraiser For Obama.  “Former U.S. Labor Secretary Hilda Solis, the front-runner for an open seat on the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, faced a federal inquiry concerning her involvement in a fundraiser for President Obama, according to two sources familiar with the case.” (Paul Pringle, “Solis Faced Federal Inquiry Concerning Role In Obama Fundraiser,” Los Angeles Times, 1/31/14)

  • In 2012, Solis Hired Legal Representation For Her Role In A Los Angeles Fundraiser Earlier In The Year. “In response to questions from The Times, Solis campaign consultant Parke Skelton said Friday she hired a Washington, D.C., law firm in 2012, her final year as Labor secretary, ‘to address legal issues concerning her role in a fundraising event’ at a Los Angeles supper club. Skelton said Solis' participation in the Obama fundraiser was ‘perfectly proper.’” (Paul Pringle, “Solis Faced Federal Inquiry Concerning Role In Obama Fundraiser,” Los Angeles Times, 1/31/14)
  • 2013 Financial Disclosure Forms Show That Solis Owed Sidley Austin Law Firm Between $50,001 And $100,000 For ‘Legal Advice.’” “Solis disclosed her legal bill in federal financial disclosure forms she filed last February, shortly after she left the Obama Cabinet. The forms show she owed the Sidley Austin firm between $50,001 and $100,000 for ‘legal advice.’”(Paul Pringle, “Solis Faced Federal Inquiry Concerning Role In Obama Fundraiser,” Los Angeles Times, 1/31/14)

California State Sen. Kevin De León (D-Los Angeles) Has Been Questioned By The FBI About Whether Solis “Solicited His Support For The Fundraiser.” “Several months later, an FBI agent questioned state Sen. Kevin de León (D-Los Angeles) about whether Solis had solicited his support for the fundraiser, according to two sources familiar with the inquiry. Both requested anonymity because they are not authorized to speak about the case.”(Paul Pringle, “Solis Faced Federal Inquiry Concerning Role In Obama Fundraiser,” Los Angeles Times, 1/31/14)

“The Fundraiser Was Held In March 2012 At La Fonda And Focused On Tapping Support In The Latino Community For The President's Reelection.” (Paul Pringle, “Solis Faced Federal Inquiry Concerning Role In Obama Fundraiser,” Los Angeles Times, 1/31/14)

“Solis Got Top Billing On Facebook Pages And Websites Promoting The Event.” “Solis got top billing on Facebook pages and websites promoting the event, which also promised a performance by singer-songwriter Gustavo Galindo. Federal law forbids Cabinet members from directly raising campaign money, although they generally are allowed to attend and give speeches at fundraisers.” (Paul Pringle, “Solis Faced Federal Inquiry Concerning Role In Obama Fundraiser,” Los Angeles Times, 1/31/14)

SOLIS IS NOT THE FIRST OBAMA CABINET MEMBER TO BECOME INAPPROPRIATELY INVOLVED IN CAMPAIGN ACTIVITY

HHS Secretary Sebelius Violated The Hatch Act In 2012

During The 2012 Campaign, HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius Violated The Hatch Act, Which Prohibits Cabinet Officials From Engaging In Certain Political Activity,  When She Made “Extemporaneous Partisan Remarks” During An Official Appearance. “HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius violated the Hatch Act, which prohibits certain political activity, when she made ‘extemporaneous partisan remarks’ during a speech in her official capacity earlier this year, the U.S. Office of Special Counsel said Wednesday. The office sent an official report outlining the rare Hatch Act violation and Sebelius’s response to President Barack Obama.” (Jennifer Haberkorn, “HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius Violated Hatch Act, OSC Report Concludes,” Politico, 9/12/13)

  • “The Office Of Special Counsel Said She Made The Political Remarks In Her Capacity As A Federal Employee And Thus Violated The Hatch Act.” “The Office of Special Counsel said she made the political remarks in her capacity as a federal employee and thus violated the Hatch Act. If  Sebelius had made those remarks in her personal capacity, they would have been acceptable.”(Jennifer Haberkorn, “HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius Violated Hatch Act, OSC Report Concludes,” Politico, 9/12/13)

After Her Appearance, Sebelius Reclassified The Event To Personal And – Along With The DNC – Reimbursed The Treasury Department For Her Travel Costs. “After that appearance, Sebelius had the event reclassified from official to political, and done in her personal capacity, in an attempt to avoid a Hatch Act violation. She and HHS also reimbursed the Treasury Department for all the costs associated with the trip. At least some of the cost was picked by the Democratic National Committee, according to the OSC.” (Jennifer Haberkorn, “HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius Violated Hatch Act, OSC Report Concludes,” Politico, 9/12/13)

  • “But The OSC Said The Reclassification Doesn’t Mean The Violation Didn’t Occur, Particularly Because The Gala Was Advertised Using Sebelius’s HHS Title.” (Jennifer Haberkorn, “HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius Violated Hatch Act, OSC Report Concludes,” Politico, 9/12/13)

“Hatch Act Violations Against Sitting Cabinet Secretaries Are Relatively Rare.” (Jennifer Haberkorn, “HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius Violated Hatch Act, OSC Report Concludes,” Politico, 9/12/13)

THE OBAMA CAMPAIGN REGULARLY DISPATCHED HIS CABINET FOR POLITICAL PURPOSES

Obama Sent Cabinet Members To “Fundraisers And Taxpayer-Funded Trips That Meld Policy And Politics, And Sometimes Fall Into The Gray Area Between The Two.” “Democrats have accused President Barack Obama of locking his Cabinet in a cabinet — but now he’s turning them loose for fundraisers and taxpayer-funded trips that meld policy and politics, and sometimes fall into the gray area between the two.” (Darren Samuelsohn, “Obama’s Cabinet Members Mix Policy, Politics,” Politico, 6/7/12)

  • Obama Cabinet Members Toured Electoral Battleground States Providing “Fiery Defenses” That Fell In Line With The Campaign’s Messaging. “A half-dozen Cabinet members have made more than 85 trips this year to electoral battlegrounds such as Colorado, Florida, Nevada, North Carolina, Ohio and Pennsylvania, according to a POLITICO review of public speeches and news clippings. Those swing-state visits represent roughly half of all travel for those six Cabinet officials this year. The rhetoric from the secretaries has at times detoured into fiery defenses that echo the campaign messaging of Obama and Vice President Joe Biden.” (Darren Samuelsohn, “Obama’s Cabinet Members Mix Policy, Politics,” Politico, 6/7/12)

Secretaries Also “Helped The Reelection Effort” By Attending Fundraisers And Encouraging Donors. “In addition, some secretaries — Housing and Urban Development’s Shaun Donovan and Education’s Arne Duncan — have helped the reelection effort by engaging in off-the-clock fundraising and massaging of local donors.” (Darren Samuelsohn, “Obama’s Cabinet Members Mix Policy, Politics,” Politico, 6/7/12)

In 2012, The Obama Campaign Sent Out Three Online Fundraising Solicitations From Cabinet Members, Raising Hatch Act Concerns. “Three online fundraising solicitations from the Obama campaign used the names of Duncan and Donovan for recent events. That raised red flags for Ana Galindo-Marrone, chief of the Hatch Act Unit in the Office of Special Counsel.” (Darren Samuelsohn, “Obama’s Cabinet Members Mix Policy, Politics,” Politico, 6/7/12)

  • Hatch Act Unit In The Office Of Special Counsel Ana Galindo-Marrone: The Invitations “Give The Impression” That The Cabinet Officials Are Soliciting Donations As The Hosts, “Which Could Cross A Line For What Administration Officials Are Permitted To Do.” “That raised red flags for Ana Galindo-Marrone, chief of the Hatch Act Unit in the Office of Special Counsel. While their official government titles aren’t on the fundraising invitations, Galindo-Marrone said the words at the top of the forms give the impression that they are the ones soliciting money as the party hosts — not the Obama Victory Fund — which could cross the line for what administration officials are permitted to do under the Hatch Act.” (Darren Samuelsohn, “Obama’s Cabinet Members Mix Policy, Politics,” Politico, 6/7/12) 
  • Marrone: Obama Invitations Featuring Education Sec. Duncan “Give Rise To Hatch Concerns.” “At issue are the online versions of invitations for a Chicago event Duncan appeared at in March with singer John Legend and a Boston event in mid-May, as well as the notice for Donovan’s participation in a Cambridge fundraiser in late May with Rep. Barney Frank. ‘They do give rise to Hatch Act concerns,’ Galindo-Marrone said after reviewing the online fundraising solicitations at POLITICO’s request.” (Darren Samuelsohn, “Obama’s Cabinet Members Mix Policy, Politics,” Politico, 6/7/12)
  • “The Legend Invitation Disappeared From The Obama Campaign Website After POLITICO’s Inquiry.” (Darren Samuelsohn, “Obama’s Cabinet Members Mix Policy, Politics,” Politico, 6/7/12)
  • The Obama Campaign Reworded The Portion Of The Invitations Flagged By Marrone. “Online versions of the two May fundraising forms are still on the pro-transparency Sunlight Foundation’s website. On the Obama campaign website, the same forms no longer include the language flagged by the Office of Special Counsel.” (Darren Samuelsohn, “Obama’s Cabinet Members Mix Policy, Politics,” Politico, 6/7/12)

Previous post

Runaways

Next post

Obama Can’t Continue To Avoid Keystone
Republican National Committee

Connect With Us

Republican National Committee
Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel
News & Videos
  • 310 First Street SE, Washington, DC 20003
  • 202-863-8500

By providing your phone number, you are consenting to receive calls and SMS/MMS msgs, including autodialed and automated calls and texts, to that number from the Republican National Committee. Msg&data rates may apply. Terms & conditions/privacy policy apply 80810-info.com.

Paid for by the Republican National Committee. Not Authorized By Any Candidate Or Candidate's Committee. www.gop.com

By providing your phone number, you are consenting to receive calls and SMS/MMS msgs, including autodialed and automated calls and texts, to that number from the Republican National Committee. Msg&data rates may apply. Terms & conditions/privacy policy apply 80810-info.com.

Paid for by the Republican National Committee.
Not Authorized By Any Candidate Or Candidate's Committee. www.gop.com