"The Hatch Act provision most commonly invoked in discussions of Comey's letter is 5 U.S.C. § 7323(a)(1), which prohibits a government employee from "us[ing] his official authority or influence for the purpose of interfering with or affecting the result of an election."
"The key text is the emphasized phrase -- which conditions a violation of the statute on whether the employee's purpose was to interfere with or affect the result of an election."
"Thus, the Hatch Act does not focus on the effect of the employee's conduct, but the intent."
"To that end, if Comey did not intend to interfere with or affect the upcoming election through his letter to Congress, then he did not violate the letter of the Hatch Act."