June 13, 2024

Trump ripped for politicizing the White House with RNC acceptance speech

President Donald Trump delivers his acceptance speech for the Republican presidential nomination on the South Lawn of the White House. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

The Hatch Act of 1939 was passed to prohibit civil service employees in the executive branch of the federal government from engaging in most forms of political activity. The president and the vice president are exempt from the law. 

Despite being exempt, most presidents have not used the White House as a backdrop for political activity. 

But, Donald Trump is not most presidents. 

Read More: FBI: Trump’s mail-in ballot interference accusations not supported by evidence

Twitter users were outraged by President Trump’s acceptance speech, from the White House’s south lawn, on the final night of the Republican National Convention. The White House was flanked by huge Trump/Pence 2020 signs as he vowed to restore America’s struggling economy before approximately 1,500 assembled people, most not wear masks or following social distancing guidelines. 

President Donald Trump arrives on stage with first lady Melania Trump to deliver his acceptance speech for the Republican presidential nomination on the South Lawn of the White House on August 27, 2020 in Washington, DC. Trump gave the speech in front of 1500 invited guests. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Walter Shaub, the former director of the U.S. Office of Government Ethics, tweeted “This abomination may be the most visible misuse of official position for private gain in America’s history.” 

“It is an abuse of the power entrusted to this man,” he continued, “the breach of a sacred trust. It is the civic equivalent of a mortal sin — maybe a religious one too.”

Read More: Teen accused in protest killings sat in front row at Trump rally, report says

Dr. Jason Johnson, a professor of global journalism and communication at Morgan State University, opined that “This entire night of the #RNC2020 is illegal and a violation of the Hatch Act. The fact that no one will be arrested for this is indicative of how close we are to an autocratic dictatorship already.”

“Trump’s use of the White House for Convention propaganda is disgusting,” tweeted podcast host Scott Dworkin.

In his 70-minute acceptance address, Trump spoke about his accomplishments over the past four years, praising his successes related to the economy. He also spent some time reflecting on the coronavirus plaguing America.

“We will defeat the virus, end the pandemic and emerge stronger than ever before,” he said.

Read More: Kamala Harris blasts Trump’s pandemic response: ‘He has failed miserably’

The president again blamed China for the spread of Covid-19. For the first time, he expressed empathy for the grieving families of more than 180,000 dead Americans felled by the disease.

“As one nation, we mourn, we grieve, and we hold in our hearts forever the memories of all of those lives that have been so tragically taken. So unnecessary,” Trump said. “In their honor, we will unite. In their memory, we will overcome.”

Other Twitter reactions:

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