This election year a minority of Americans elected a president whose only cognizable platform was bigotry and racism – precisely the kind of bigotry and racism that lands employers in court. In the workplace, employers are legally liable for their employees’ discriminatory, bigoted behavior. And their employees’ affiliations, activities, group memberships, political affinities etc. are all material to the legal question of discriminatory intent.
Whether the supervisor accused of harassing African-American employees has a confederate flag on his back truck window is material to the question of employer liability, as is whether that supervisor is sympathetic to white supremacists, the KKK, or David Duke.
So too is whether that supervisor’s bumper has a Trump/Pence sticker on it.
And it wouldn’t take a particularly able employment lawyer to find out.
Employers remain responsible for maintaining discrimination-free work environments. And to that end employers are required by law to avoid hiring individuals who harbor discriminatory attitudes about any number of protected classes – race, sex, religion, disability – all of the protected classes that the Trump/Pence campaign has targeted and promised to discriminate against.
If you are an employer, before you hire someone who you suspect to have supported the Trump/Pence ticket, you should imagine what it would be like to watch the deposition of one of your supervisors, accused of discriminating against Muslim employees, women employees, African-American employees, or disabled employees. How will that supervisor answer the question: “Who did you support in the last election?”
Could your business survive the answer: “Trump/Pence?”