It seemed like Kellyanne Conway may have violated a federal law when she cheerfully gave Ivanka Trump’s Nordstrom-no-more clothing line a “free commercial” on live TV in early February. The Office of Government Ethics even recommended disciplinary action, but you can probably guess how that’s turned out.
While Conway has become less visible on the talking head TV circuit, she’s still comfortable enough in her position to put her feet up in the Oval Office. CNN Money reports that all that’s happened so far with regards to her endorsement of Ivanka’s products is a White House lawyer met with Conway to tell her not to market any brands while representing the president. They also shared a letter from the Government Ethics office that makes no mention of the suggested disciplinary actions:
“Upon completion of our inquiry, we concluded that Ms. Conway acted inadvertently and is highly unlikely to do so again,” says the letter, signed by Stefan C. Passantino, a White House deputy counsel for compliance and ethics.
“It is noted that Ms. Conway made the statement in question in a light, off-hand manner while attempting to stand up for a person she believed had been unfairly treated and did so without nefarious motive or intent to benefit personally,” the letter says.
The recommendation for Conway to be disciplined, or even fired, originally came from Representative Elijah Cummings of Maryland, the ranking Democrat on the House Oversight Committee. Cummings told CNN Money that the tepid response is a bad sign and hypocritical to boot.
“Other federal employees would likely be suspended for engaging in this conduct, and White House officials should not be held to a different standard,” Cummings said. Cummings said he hoped Donald Trump would reconsider the decision, but it looks like Conway still has a much stronger hold on the president than she does on the media.