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Even if the committee doesn’t find a Hatch Act violation, the letter marks yet another cautionary warning to federal employees not to mix politics and government work.

Rep. Darrell E. Issa, California Republican and chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, requested information last month from the Office of Special Counsel into suspected Hatch Act violations by former Labor Secretary Hilda Solis.

The Office of Special Counsel, which investigates Hatch Act violations, concluded last year that Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius had violated the act because of a partisan speech she gave at a government-funded gathering in 2012.

Nearly two dozen employees at the Department of Education came under scrutiny in Hatch Act investigations stemming from emails they sent during the 2008 presidential campaign, including a civil rights lawyer who wrote that “many Republicans are inherently racist,” according to the Federal Times.

The Education Department’s office of inspector analyzed email accounts of all department employees, searching for candidate names during the 2008 campaign season.

It found that 870 employees, about one in five at the agency, sent at least one email containing the name of a presidential candidate.

Of those, 21 cases were referred to the Office of Special Counsel because they sent multiple political emails, according to a report last year by the newspaper, which cited an open records request.

“I’ve been advising my clients for years and years that when it comes to email, it’s the government’s and they can search it — there’s no question about it,” said Josh Rose, a Washington-based lawyer who has represented federal employees before the Office of Special Counsel.

“You never want to use government email for anything possibly political.”

University of Minnesota law professor Richard Painter, who also served in the Bush White House as an associate counsel, said Hatch Act cases will continue to surface without faster and tougher enforcement.

“If they don’t crack down, we’re going to get a lot more, whether the Democrats or Republicans are in charge, it doesn’t matter,” he said.

The Office of Special Counsel announced this month that it had filed a complaint against an Internal Revenue Service customer service representative who urged taxpayers to vote for President Obama in 2012.

Complaints were filed against two other IRS employees this month in separate cases.