Trump officials are denying the administration took part in a conspiracy aimed at adding a citizenship question to the US census in order to favor Republicans.
In closed-door testimony on Tuesday, three top Trump officials testified before the House Committee on Oversight and Reform that they never worked with Dr. Thomas Hofeller, a redistricting expert, in order to rig elections in favor of Republicans.
House Rep Jim Jordan cheered the news, retweeting his own report that stated ‘new witness testimony debunks Democrats’ conspiracy theories on Census Citizenship Question’.
🚨 #BREAKING: New Witness Testimony Debunks Democrats' Conspiracy Theories on Census Citizenship Question
📃 Read @Jim_Jordan's latest report here: https://t.co/vI0lHCCulG
— Oversight Committee Republicans (@GOPoversight) June 18, 2019
According to Jordan’s report:
On June 12, 2019, the Committee adopted a resolution and report concluding that
Attorney General William P. Barr and Secretary of Commerce Wilbur L. Ross, Jr., should be
held in contempt of Congress over documents relating to the reinstitution of a citizenship
question on the 2020 decennial census (“contempt citation”). Chairman Elijah E. Cummings
issued subpoenas to Attorney General Barr and Secretary Ross for documents on April 2, 2019.
The contempt citation was premature, unnecessary, and designed to advance a partisan
goal of influencing ongoing litigation presently before the Supreme Court of the United States.
The report goes on to say that the both the Department of Justice and the Dept Commerce had fully cooperated with the Committee Chairman Elijah Cumming’s probe into the Trump administration’s decision to reinstate a citizenship question.
Democrats latched on to a 2015 report from Hofeller that claimed using voting-age citizens for redistricting would help the GOP, the Daily Caller News Foundation reported. The Trump administration has been accused of not disclosing work with Hofeller as part of the gerrymandering conspiracy.
The three Trump admin officials, James Uthmeier, a Commerce Dept lawyer, Gene Hamiton, a DOJ staffer, and former Kansas Sec of STate and Trump advisor Kris Kobach testified on Tuesday that they had no knowledge of Hofeller’s 2015 report until the allegations appeared in late May, DCNF reported.
Uthmeier and Hamilton additionally testified that they had never spoken with anyone at the White House regarding the census citizenship question.
Cummings doesn’t seem content to let sleeping dogs lie, and fired off a letter to Census Bureau Chief of staff Christa Jones requesting she hand over documents related to communications she had with Trump staff on Hofeller, The Hill reported.
Cummings is suspect of Jones’s use of a personal email account to contact Hofeller. [It] raises serious concerns and may be in violation of the Federal Records Act,” Cumming wrote in his Tuesday letter.
Jones has been requested to appear before the Oversight Committee on July 8 over the citizenship question issue.
The news comes one day after the Supreme Court handed Dems a big win on gerrymandering.
Supreme Court gives Dems a big win on gerrymandering https://t.co/KKR5qeAe1a
— Conservative News (@BIZPACReview) June 17, 2019
As BPR reported:
The Supreme Court ruled the House didn’t have the standing to appeal a lower court ruling that said new district maps must be used ahead of statewide elections later this year, The Hill reported — Democrats claimed previous district maps were unlawful.
The issue being that those maps, drawn by Republican lawmakers in 2011, after the last census, allegedly diminished the power of black voters in other districts.
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