embassy in berlin instructed foreign service personnel stationed there to not attend senator barack obama's public rally today" which the state department labeled a partisan political activity prohibited under its regulations for those serving overseas. state department official at the center of that decision was this man, patrick kennedy. mr. kennedy got a lot of pushback against that decision at the time, especially by members of the foreign service who wanted to go to the speech. his rationale was "no u.s. government foreign service person serve everything overseas should be seen as advocating for one side or the other." that kind of non-partisan ethos speaks to what the state department is all about. i mean, take patrick kennedy, for example, he was appointed as an undersecretary of state during the bush presidency in 2007. when president obama took over the white house, he was asked to stay on in the state department in the same role. if you look at his job description in the state department web site, you can see why they might have a tough tim ginning up an easy replacement for him.
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