If we were looking for Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz this week, we competence wish to deliberate a 2014 electoral map of involved Democrats as a guide.
Mr. Moniz toured Louisiana’s Gulf Coast oil and gas operations to assure a attention a administration upheld a expansion even as a boss rolls out his meridian change agenda. At his side was Sen. Mary Landrieu, Louisiana Democrat, one of a many exposed incumbents in this fall’s election.
PHOTOS: Conservatives in Hollywood: Celebrities who gaunt right
Mr. Moniz followed adult Thursday by announcing a relaxation of regulations ruling exports of liquefied healthy gas, one of a pet issues of Ms. Landrieu and another exposed energy-state Democrat, Sen. Mark Begich of Alaska.
And on Friday, a nation’s appetite arch heads to Colorado, where he’ll seem with nonetheless another involved Democrat, Sen. Mark Udall.
Mr. Moniz’s report is only one pointer of a Obama administration’s accordant bid to use a levers of supervision to column adult a chances of gripping a Democrat-controlled Senate in November.
Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy handed out investigate grants with a … more
From grants to visits, even a stipulation of a new inhabitant monument, a Obama administration has flexed a flesh — and non-stop a purse strings — in new weeks to assistance a celebration incumbents in what is moulding adult to be a tough re-election conflict for Democrats.
It’s an age-old use for a administration in appetite to use a control of supervision to assistance a electoral chances, even yet sovereign laws like a Hatch Act demarcate a approach output of sovereign monies on debate activities.
When George W. Bush was president, inner emails flush display his arch domestic adviser, Karl Rove, orchestrated a minute devise to use sovereign resources and Cabinet officers to assistance GOP candidates.
PHOTOS: Hand cannons: The world’s many absolute handguns
Likewise, former Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius was cited by a U.S. Office of Special Counsel for violating a Hatch Act during a 2012 choosing after giving a narrow-minded debate on an central supervision trip. She was systematic to reinstate a supervision for a cost of her airfare.
And Congress has investigated President Obama’s White House domestic affairs bureau recently for deviate too distant into electoral politics on a taxpayer’s dime. The boss temporarily disbanded a bureau though recently easy it to action, to a dismay of some GOP lawmakers.
The gray area that both parties have exploited for years is a vital targeting of central announcements and grants to cities and states where members of their celebration can advantage from a high-profile proclamation only as elections are approaching.
While certain officials such as a secretaries of state and invulnerability are legally limited from debate activity, other high-profile Cabinet members have a ability to assistance out possibilities in need.
“The secretaries of labor, energy, HHS, etc. have a ability to seem in domestic contexts, though they also have a appetite to safeguard that income goes to a right places and a ability to make certain a announcements come during a right time,” pronounced John Hudak, a associate in governance studies with a Brookings Institution.
Mr. Hudak is a author of “Presidential Pork,” a book that examines presidential efforts to control sovereign spending and amass electoral rewards from that power.
Other experts disagree it’s roughly unfit for a Cabinet secretary to totally equivocate any activity that creates a domestic appearance.