Air Force

September 6, 2012

Regulations govern political activities for federal employees

Capt. Bronson Malcom
5th Bomb Wing Legal Office

MINOT AIR FORCE BASE, N.D. — If you’ve turned on your TV lately, you may have noticed that campaign season is in full swing. Air Force members are encouraged to carry out the rights and responsibilities of U.S. citizenship. As you choose where to cast your votes, however, it is important to remember that military members and federal civilian employees are subject to rules regarding participation in political activities.

When it comes to participating in political activities, always avoid the appearance of official endorsement or approval. Never wear your uniform to a political event. And if you are expressing your opinion on a political candidate or issue, ensure it is clear that they are your views and not those of the Air Force or Department of Defense.

For more detailed guidance, Air Force members should refer to AFI 51-902, Political Activities by Members of the Air Force. Federal civilian employees should refer to the Hatch Act, 5 U.S.C. §7324. For questions, contact the Legal Office or your Union Representative.

 

Military members are permitted to:

  • Vote.
  • Join a partisan political club and attend it’s meetings as a spectator when not in uniform.
  • Sign a petition for specific legislation or to place a candidate’s name on a ballot.
  • Write a letter to the editor expressing the member’s personal views, so long as it is clear that they are not the views of the Air Force or DoD.
  • Make monetary contributions to a political organization, party, or committee favoring a particular candidate or slate of candidates.
  • Display a political bumper sticker on their private vehicle.
  • Wear a political button or t-shirt so long as there is no appearance of official endorsement.
  • Participate fully in the Federal Voting Assistance Program.

Military members are prohibited from:

  • Participating in partisan political fundraising activities.
  • Using official authority or influence to interfere with an election.
  • Publishing partisan political articles, letters, or endorsements signed or written by the member that solicit votes for or against a candidate or cause. This is distinguished from a letter to the editor.
  • Serving in any official capacity or sponsoring a partisan political club.
  • Speaking before a partisan political gathering.
  • Participating in a radio, TV, or other program as an advocate of a partisan political party, candidate, or cause.
  • Marching or riding in a partisan political parade.
  • Displaying a large political sign, banner, or poster (as distinguished from a bumper sticker) on a private vehicle.
  • Displaying a large political sign, banner, or similar device at a residence on a military installation, even if that residence is part of privatized housing.
  • Participating, while in uniform, in any activity which may imply Air Force sanction of the cause for which the activity is conducted.
  • Using contemptuous words against the office holders described in 10 U.S.C. §888.

Federal civilian employees are permitted to:

  • Vote.
  • Be a member of a political party or partisan group.
  • Serve as officers of a political party or partisan group.
  • Participate in a political caucus, convention, or rally.
  • Display a political sticker or button off duty.

Federal civilian employees are prohibited from:

  • Receiving or soliciting political contributions.
  • Conducting any political activity that creates a real or apparent conflict of interest with the full and impartial performance of their official duties.



All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
IronMan_pict

Special Operations develops ‘Iron Man’ Suit

MACDILL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. – Tony Stark’s Iron Man suit is cool. But it’s not real. The Tactical Assault Light Operators Suit is cool, too. But it is real and may soon be protecting America’s special operations forces...
 
 

Financial responsibility — vital to readiness

LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. — In the “Band of Brothers” miniseries, there is a line in the movie where the soldiers are told to make sure they sign up for life insurance to ensure their next-of-kin gets $10,000 upon the soldier’s death. While none of us are about to make a combat jump in 1944 to...
 
 

Lessons learned in protecting social media accounts

WASHINGTON (AFNS) — On a Saturday afternoon in late November, I was informed about a political remark that appeared on my Director of Public Affairs Twitter feed. A staff member called to ask if I was aware of the re-tweet. At the time, I was on leave, out of the state, tending to my daughter...
 

 

Adapt, overcome, succeed

LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. — Change is inevitable, especially in today’s Air Force. If you’ve been serving for more than a few years, it’s likely you’ve experienced everything from new physical fitness requirements to the implementation of force management programs. Enlisted performance reports and feedback forms have been altered and changes to the promotion system are...
 
 

Living in the New Normal

The Military Child Education Coalition, or MCEC, will be hosting Living in the New Normal Institute, Feb. 4-5. LINN-I is a free two-day institute outlining specific community resources, deployment information and practical strategies for encouraging resilience in all children. Some learning outcomes to expect from the training are differentiating affective aspects of children dealing with...
 
 
Training_pict4

Air Force, Army conduct joint service training

U.S. Air Force and Arizona Army National Guard units conducted joint training at a southern Arizona military training range Jan. 20. A-10C Thunderbolt IIs from the 354th Fighter Squadron, based out of D-M, and a UH-60A Black Ha...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin