DoD

October 26, 2012

Do’s and Don’ts for Airmen during political season

Tags:
Maj. Jennifer Clay
Air Force Global Strike Command Judge Advocate


(AFNS) — With the 2012 general presidential election only weeks away, keep in mind that special ethics rules apply to active-duty Airmen regarding their political activities.

The purpose of these rules is to ensure the Department of Defense does not influence our nation’s electoral process. Violation of these rules can have serious consequences and could result in criminal or administrative penalties.

As an Airman, you should be familiar with what you can and cannot do regarding political activities. The following is a quick reminder of the basic rules:

As an Airman, you may:

  • Register, vote and privately express your opinions on political candidates and issues (but not as a representative of the Armed Forces).
  • Make monetary contributions to a political organization.
  • Encourage other military members to exercise their voting rights, however, you may not attempt to influence or interfere with the outcome of an election. Also, you may not encourage subordinates to vote for or against a particular issue or candidate.
  • Sign a petition for specific legislative action or a petition to place a candidate’s name on an official election ballot. You may not identify yourself by rank or duty title.
  • Write a letter to the editor of a newspaper expressing your personal views on public issues or political candidates, if such action is not part of an organized letter-writing campaign. You may not identify yourself by rank or duty title. If the letter identifies you as being on active-duty status (or if you are otherwise reasonably identifiable as a member of the Armed Forces), the letter should clearly state that the views expressed are your individual views and not those of the Air Force or DOD.
  • Display a small bumper sticker on your private vehicle.

The following activities are prohibited by the Joint Ethics Regulation, DOD Regulations, Air Force Instructions and federal law. Violation of these rules may result in criminal penalties or disciplinary action.
As an Airman, you may not:

  • Use your official authority, influence or government resources including email, to interfere with an election, affect the course or outcome of an election, encourage votes for a particular candidate or issue or ask for political contributions from others.
  • Participate in any radio, television or other program or group discussion as an advocate of a partisan political party or candidate.
  • Solicit or fundraise in federal offices, facilities or military reservations for a partisan political cause or candidate.
  • Display a large political sign, banner or poster (as distinguished from a bumper sticker) on the top or side of a private vehicle.
  • Participate in any organized effort to provide voters with transportation to the polls if the effort is organized by a partisan political party or candidate.
  • Attend partisan political events as an official representative of the Armed Forces.
  • Display a partisan political sign, poster, banner or similar device visible to the public at one’s residence on a military installation, even if that residence is part of a privatized housing development.
  • Under Article 88 of the Uniformed Code of Military Justice, military officers may not publicly disrespect or undermine certain elected officials, federal secretaries or congress.

Partisan political activities are actions that show support for a particular political party or candidate. For example, an Airman may not participate in a rally supporting a candidate, work for a candidate’s election committee, run for elected office, appear in a political advertisement or otherwise officially support a candidate. Earlier this year, an Army reservist was reprimanded for appearing in uniform on CNN to support a presidential candidate. This is just one example of what not to do.




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


 
 

 
U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Jack Sanders

57th OSS integrates new ATC radar system

U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Jack Sanders Staff Sgt. Christopher Beier, 57th Wing Air Traffic Controller, monitors radar activity on the newly installed Standard Terminal Automation Replacement System, or STARS, Oct. 15 a...
 
 

Future of AF helicopter fleets discussed at conference

BARKSDALE AIR FORCE BASE, La. — Air Force Global Strike Command’s Helicopter Operations Division hosted the Worldwide Helicopter Conference here Oct. 7-9, to discuss the current and future state of the Air Force’s helicopter fleets. The conference promoted cross talk among the Air Force’s helicopter forces, which are principally operated by Air Combat Command, Pacific...
 
 

Online vigilance helps reduce risk

MOODY AIR FORCE BASE, Ga. — I received at least five emails last week warning me to secure my social media settings and be aware of what I post on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Why? Do you not like to see what I had for dinner last night? Too many #selfies? Are photos of my dog eating...
 

 

Nurturing relationships and a culture of caring

DOVER AIR FORCE BASE, Del. — When life gets challenging, stressors can build and conflicts can escalate, sometimes leading to abuse. Preventing domestic abuse is fundamental to basic relationship maintenance. Partners in healthy relationships work together every day to nurture their relationship, taking care to address issues and concerns when they occur. Healthy relationships should...
 
 
U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Siuta B. Ika

Open House to celebrate Nellis’ legacy of liberty

U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Siuta B. Ika Gary Nellis, son of the late 1st Lt. William Harrell Nellis, Nellis Air Force Base’s namesake, stands in front of memorabilia he has of his father at his home in Henderson, Nev....
 
 
U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Shad Eidson

799th SFS turns up heat, wins Fire Muster traveling trophy

U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Shad Eidson Members of the 432nd Wing Staff team fill a drum to complete the ‘Bucket Brigade’ final event during a fire muster challenge at Creech Air Force Base, Nev., Oct. 10. The 4th An...
 




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