Barr, Ross sued over lack of cen­sus ci­ti­zen­ship doc­u­ments

Orlando Sentinel - - NATION & WORLD -

WASH­ING­TON — The House Over­sight Com­mit­tee sued two top Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion of­fi­cials Tues­day for re­fus­ing to pro­duce doc­u­ments re­lated to a de­ci­sion to add a ci­ti­zen­ship ques­tion to the 2020 cen­sus.

At­tor­ney Gen­eral Wil­liam Barr and Com­merce Sec­re­tary Wil­bur Ross “have not pro­duced a sin­gle ad­di­tional doc­u­ment” since the Supreme Court blocked the ad­min­is­tra­tion’s ef­forts to in­clude the ci­ti­zen­ship ques­tion last June, the com­mit­tee said.

Rep. Carolyn Maloney,

D-N.Y., who was elected over­sight chair last week, said the law­suit fol­lows the ex­am­ple set by the panel’s late chair­man, Mary­land Rep. Elijah Cum­mings.

Cum­mings, who died in Oc­to­ber, “be­lieved with all his heart that the Con­sti­tu­tion re­quires Congress to en­sure that the rapidly ap­proach­ing Cen­sus is con­ducted in a pro­fes­sional man­ner that pro­motes ac­cu­racy, en­sures in­tegrity and is free from par­ti­san pol­i­tics — and I couldn’t agree more,” Maloney said.

The law­suit marks the lat­est ac­tion by Democrats to use their House ma­jor­ity to ag­gres­sively in­ves­ti­gate the in­ner work­ings of the Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion, in­clud­ing a House vote in July to hold Barr and Ross in con­tempt of Congress over the cen­sus is­sue.

Trump aban­doned the ci­ti­zen­ship ques­tion last sum­mer af­ter the Supreme Court said the ad­min­is­tra­tion’s jus­ti­fi­ca­tion for the ques­tion “seems to have been con­trived.” Trump di­rected agen­cies to try to com­pile the informatio­n us­ing ex­ist­ing data­bases.

The cen­sus is set to be­gin in Alaska in Jan­uary and across the coun­try in April 2020.

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