Trump urged staff to break the law, says former press secretary

Former President Donald Trump urged employees to feel free to break the law, his former press secretary Stephanie Grisham told CNN’s Jim Acosta on Saturday.

Grisham’s revelations came days after a federal investigation report revealed that at least 13 former Trump officials violated the Hatch Act by mixing their government duties with campaign.

They did so without consequence and with the approval of the administration as part of a “deliberate violation of the Hatch Act“, which prevents officials from using their platforms to influence elections, the Office of Special Counsel concluded.

“In the White House, when we got violations of the Hatch Act, it was a mark of honor,” Grisham told Acosta.

“It was a joke in the White House. The president used to say to us, ‘Do you know who’s in charge of the Hatch Act? It’s me, [so] go ahead and say what you want to say. ‘”

Because of his violation of the law, Trump will continue to try to stand up for a demand for documents from Parliament’s select committee investigating the January 6 uprising, Grisham believes. He will also continue to encourage former aides to ignore summonses to testify, she said.

Steve Bannon, who ignored his subpoena, will now carry his accusation of criminal contempt for Congress as a “badge of honor” and use it to raise money, Grisham added.

As for the Hatch Act, the cheeky offenders included former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, former White House senior assistant Jared Kushner, former press secretary Kayleigh McEnany, aide Kellyanne Conway and former senior policy adviser Stephen Miller, the report noted.

“Failure to impose discipline created the conditions for what appeared to be one taxpayer-funded campaign apparatus within the upper echelons of the executive branch, ”the report said.

The behavior revealed the Trump administration’s “willingness to manipulate government activities for party political purposes,” it added.

Watch Grisham’s full interview in the video above. Her comments on the Hatch Act begin at 2 p.m.

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