Published: Fri, June 14, 2019
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

‘I'm Not Going to Fire Her,’ Trump Says of Kellyanne Conway

‘I'm Not Going to Fire Her,’ Trump Says of Kellyanne Conway

Trump responded on Fox News'Fox and Friends on Friday saying people are entitled to free speech in the United States and this isn't a violation of the Hatch Act.

President Donald Trump says he won't fire White House counselor Kellyanne Conway after a federal watchdog agency recommended her removal for repeatedly violating a law that limits political activity by government workers. "I think she's a terrific person, she's a tremendous spokesperson, she's loyal, she's a great person ..."

"No, I'm not going to fire her", Trump told hosts Steve Doocy, Brian Kilmeade and Ainsley Earhardt.

The White House previously defended Conway in a statement released shortly after the OSC recommendation, wherein they also pointed to Conway's right to free speech. As you later acknowledged, OSC's actions were prompted by your desire to respond to press questions concerning a media report that day about comments that Ms. Conway had allegedly made and by the purported personal "offense" that you took to those comments even though you made no effort to investigate before rushing to judgment.

Conway reportedly said if they were trying to silence her with the Hatch Act, "it's not going to work".

"It's just not fair", Trump said. "Others, of all political views, have objected to the (the office's) unclear and unevenly applied rules which have a chilling effect on free speech for all federal employees".

The White House immediately rejected the special counsel office's ruling and demanded that it withdraw its report. "Based on what I saw yesterday, how could I do that?" The 11-page report, submitted by the Office of Special Counsel (unrelated to Robert Mueller) recommended that Conway be removed from her post in the administration.

House Oversight Chairman Elijah Cummings said his committee will hold a hearing with the Office of Special Counsel on June 26 and will invite Conway to testify.

In its conclusion, the OSC said that Conway "has substantial knowledge of the Hatch Act and was previously found to have violated the law by engaging in similar conduct".

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