Panel approves subpoenas related to citizenship question


WASHINGTON (AP) — A Democratic-controlled House panel voted Tuesday to subpoena documents and a witness related to the Trump administration’s decision to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census.

The vote was 23-14, with Rep. Justin Amash of Michigan being the only Republican to join with Democratic lawmakers in the vote.

Democrats say they want specific documents that will determine why Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross decided to add the question. They say the Trump administration has declined to provide those documents despite repeated requests. The vote is the latest example of the ways Democratic lawmakers are using their majority to aggressively investigate the inner workings of President Donald Trump’s administration.

Ross said the decision in March 2018 to add the question was based on a Justice Department request to help it enforce the Voting Rights Act.

In response to Tuesday’s vote, he said his department “has been nothing but cooperative with the committee’s expansive and detailed requests for records.”

Jack Smith Runs to Judge Chutkan, Claims Trump Violated Terms of Release with Gun Video

Ross said the department has turned over 11,500 pages of documents and noted that he testified at a recent hearing. But Democrats countered that many of the pages were so heavily redacted that they provided little or no useful information.

“We don’t want thousands of pieces of paper. We want the specific priority documents we asked for — unredacted and in full,” said Rep. Elijah Cummings of Maryland, the panel’s Democratic chairman.

Democratic lawmakers said Ross considered adding the citizenship question from his first days in the administration. They fear it will reduce census participation in immigrant-heavy communities, harming representation and access to federal dollars. They want more information about the back-and-forth between administration officials before the decision was made.

Trump recently tweeted the census will “be meaningless” without the citizenship question.

Republicans said the census investigation is an example of “partisan oversight of the Trump administration.”

“Why don’t Democrats want to know whether you are a citizen or not?” asked Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan, the top Republican on the panel.

Two federal judges have already ruled against the question and the Supreme Court is expected to rule on the issue before survey forms are printed.

It would be the first time since 1950 that the full, once-a-decade census asked people about their citizenship.

The Western Journal has not reviewed this Associated Press story prior to publication. Therefore, it may contain editorial bias or may in some other way not meet our normal editorial standards. It is provided to our readers as a service from The Western Journal.

Truth and Accuracy

Submit a Correction →

We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.

The Associated Press is an independent, not-for-profit news cooperative headquartered in New York City. Their teams in over 100 countries tell the world’s stories, from breaking news to investigative reporting. They provide content and services to help engage audiences worldwide, working with companies of all types, from broadcasters to brands. Photo credit: @AP on Twitter
The Associated Press was the first private sector organization in the U.S. to operate on a national scale. Over the past 170 years, they have been first to inform the world of many of history's most important moments, from the assassination of Abraham Lincoln and the bombing of Pearl Harbor to the fall of the Shah of Iran and the death of Pope John Paul.

Today, they operate in 263 locations in more than 100 countries relaying breaking news, covering war and conflict and producing enterprise reports that tell the world's stories.
New York City