Joaquin Castro has launched an investigation of Mike Pompeo’s speech to the Republican National Convention on Tuesday. The Secretary of State may have violated the Hatch Act.
The Hatch Act forbids federal officials from participating in political events, like conventions, while performing official duties. Pompeo recorded his speech from Jerusalem, where he was fulfilling his diplomatic function.
Rep. Castro, who is chairman of the House Foreign Affairs panel’s subcommittee on oversight and investigations, said he would investigate the matter.
He outlined his concerns in a letter to Deputy Secretary of State Stephen Biegun.
“It’s absolutely unacceptable that a sitting U.S. Secretary of State, America’s top diplomat, would use official taxpayer-funded business to participate in a political party convention, particularly after the State Department published guidance that explicitly prohibits such activity,” Castro said.
“This action is part of a pattern of politicization of U.S foreign policy, for which President Trump was impeached by the House of Representatives, that undermines America’s standing in the world.”
“The American people deserve a full investigation,” he said.
“The Trump administration and Secretary Pompeo have shown a gross disregard not only of basic ethics, but also a blatant willingness to violate federal law for political gain.”
“Congress has a responsibility to stand up for the rule of law and hold them accountable for this corrupt behavior,” he wrote.
Darragh Roche is a journalist covering U.S. politics and media