Former Housing and Urban Development official Lynne Patton has been barred from federal employment for four years and fined after the US Office of Special Counsel said she violated the Hatch Act.
Federal officials announced Tuesday (April 6) that Patton, who oversaw Housing and Urban Development in New York and New Jersey in 2017 used her position to support former president Donald Trump’s unsuccessful re-election campaign in 2020.
As reported by The Huffington Post, Patton made headlines in 2019 after she announced she would live in New York public housing for a month. The Office of Special Counsel said that’s where Patton recruited residents of the housing development to be featured in a video in support of Trump that would later be aired at the Republican National Convention.
“By using information and NYCHA connections available to her solely by virtue of her HUD position, Patton improperly harnessed the authority of her federal position to assist the Trump campaign in violation of the Hatch Act,” the Office explained in a statement.
In the settlement reached between the Office and Patton, the Trump appointee will have to pay $1,000.
Patton’s ban from federal employment raises speculation that other Trump administration officials will be investigated for their violation of the Hatch Act, including Trump’s daughter Ivanka Trump, Kellyanne Conway, and others.
Patton, much like her boss Ben Carson, didn’t have experience in housing or urban development, rather she was a trusted aide to the Trump family before receiving her appointment.
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