Political Activities – Government Employees

Political speech is one of the most fundamental protections under our Constitution. However, persons in government service agree to certain limits on their freedom to engage in political activities as a condition of their service. These limits are codified in law and regulation – the applicable policies for Air Force employees and servicemembers are given below.

References:

  • 2 USC 441a, Limitations on Contributions and Expenditures
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    Covert Action

    Covert Action: Legislative Background and
    Possible Policy Questions / CRS Report
    http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/intel/RL33715.pdf

    In an important change, Congress for the first time statutorily defined covert action to mean “an
    activity or activities of the United States Government to influence political, economic, or military
    conditions abroad, where it is intended that the role of the United States Government will not be
    apparent or acknowledged publicly.”1 Sec. 503(e) of the National Security Act of 1947 [50 U.S.C. 413b].
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    DoD-Industry Engagement

    DoD-Industry Engagement

    Conflict of Interest Prohibition: Government officials may not participate in a matter that presents an actual or apparent conflict of interest.
    18 USC 208

    Procurement Integrity Act: Government officials may not disclose proprietary or source selection information.
    41 USC 423

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    Religious Accomodation

    Resources on Religious Accommodation within DoD

    ** NDAA FY 2013 (Public Law 112-239), Section 533 **

    SEC. 533. PROTECTION OF RIGHTS OF CONSCIENCE OF MEMBERS OF THE ARMED FORCES AND CHAPLAINS OF SUCH MEMBERS.
    (a) PROTECTION OF RIGHTS OF CONSCIENCE.—
    (1) ACCOMMODATION.—The Armed Forces shall accommodate the beliefs of a member of the armed forces reflecting
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    Quotes on Law, War, and Liberty

    Adams, Samuel: “Contemplate the mangled bodies of your countrymen, and then say, What should be the reward of such sacrifices? Bid us and our posterity bow the knee, supplicate the friendship, and plow, and sow, and reap, to glut the avarice of the men who have let loose on us the dogs of war to riot in our blood and hunt us from the face of the earth? If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquillity of servitude greater than the animating contest of freedom–go from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you.
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    Posted in Law