POTUS is by definition a political position. Most departments are, by choice and good counsel, decidedly neutral as regards to politics. Individual officers on their own time and out of uniform can be pretty darn political, though even then there may be restrictions to some degree. However, when that uniform is on, you now represent the department as an entity, not yourself. You agreed to those rules when you signed on. If you no longer wish to abide by them, either resign or accept the consequences of violating policy.I know that's "how it is." What I am wondering is whether it should be that way. The POTUS is a govt. official, and when he shows up to vote, it's obvious who he supports for POTUS. Yet no one gives him a "rip" (to use TV cop lingo) for doing so. I can see why it might be bad for cops to get together and hold a rally in front of the courthouse (peaceful demonstration) for one candidate or the other. But to show up alone with some detectable clue as to who they personally plan to vote for--I am less sure that's a venial sin, let alone a mortal one. But I confess that in my state, they don't want you even driving up to the parking spaces in front of the voting place with a bumper sticker for a candidate, IIRC.
If the officer voted on duty in his uniform and chose to wear a plain mask, or one that didn’t take a political opinion, this never would have come up, complete non issue. Just another guy participating in the process who happens to be a cop. But, he was looking for attention and he got it. Cause...effect. What form that attention will take is not entirely known by us, but I’m guessing it’ll be negative, at least to some degree.
His job, job while wearing that uniform, is to keep things calm, to protect and serve without regard to any circumstances including political affiliation. The department must be neutral. He just took a position on behalf of that department that irritates, offends, or gives pause to a big part of the population for no other reason than he just had to share his opinion with the world. Bad judgment that was entirely avoidable.