Critics accused the Old Man of sometimes using government resources for political purposes. The practice did not exactly start in 1969, nor did it end in 1974. The President-elect has now taken it into the Internet Age. His official transition website (change.gov) has this invitation on its homepage:
The story of this campaign is your story. It is about the great things we can do when we come together around a common purpose. We want to hear your inspiring stories from the campaign and Election Day.
The site also contains issue statements that come directly from campaign materials.
The official guidelines for the use of the .gov domain include this restriction:
The Gov domain is for the operation of government, not the political, political party, or campaign environment. No campaigning can be done using Gov Internet domains. The Gov Internet domain websites may not be directly linked to or refer to websites created or operated by a campaign or any campaign entity or committee. No political sites or party names or acronyms can be used. Separate websites and e-mail on other top-level domains (TLDs), such as .org, will have to be used for political activity.
Is the transition site in violation? A former administration official says:
It’s certainly reasonable to have pictures of Obama and Biden and links to job materials and the like. Part of the purpose is, after all, to collect resumes for political appointments which are perfectly legal. The questions in my mind are whether they can transfer material from the barackobama.com website and whether they should be collecting campaign stories and generally trying to keep a campaign flavor going. If any Federal agency is to collect historical material, it should be the National Archives, not the Office of the Presidential Transition. The blog needs to be non-political as well.