An audio recording has been released which contains a conversation in which former Labor Secretary Hilda Solis is caught soliciting funds for President Obama’s re-election campaign — a violation of the Hatch Act.
The message was submitted by Chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Darrell Issa. The committee scheduled a hearing today regarding taxpayer-funded political campaign activity by government officials. Director of the White House Office of Political Strategy and Outreach David Simas defied a congressional subpoena and failed to appear and provide testimony.
Instead, Issa played a recording which shows then-Labor Secretary Solis violating federal law by pressuring a subordinate to contribute to President Obama’s re-election campaign.
“Hi—this is Hilda Solis calling, um, just calling you off-the-record here—Wanted to ask you if you could, um, help us get folks organized to come to a fundraiser that we’re doing for Organizing for America for Obama campaign on Friday at La Fonda at 6 p.m. Steven Smith, an attorney, and his staff are helping us [inaudible]. There are a lot of folks that we know that are coming but wanted to ask you if you might help contribute or get other folks to help out. I would encourage you to call this number, [inaudible]–that’s his assistant– at [phone number] and you can call [the attorney] yourself who’s a good friend, an attorney, good friend of mine, at [phone number]. And it’s for a Friday event at La Fonda [inaudible] we’re just trying to raise money to show that we have support here in [inaudible].”
The message containing Solis’ illegal fundraising activities can be heard below…
Issa had the hearing recessed, as members sought to discuss Simas’ defiance of the subpoena in what a press release called the “White House’s latest attack on our Constitution’s system of checks and balances.”