Watchdog group sues over information on Stephen Miller’s involvement in ‘public charge’ rule

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American Oversight, a government ethics watchdog group, filed a lawsuit Wednesday suing multiple government agencies over information related to White House adviser Stephen Miller’s involvement in the drafting of the “public charge” rule. 

The rule, which critics call a “wealth test” for immigrants, went into effect Monday and restricts legal immigrants from seeking public assistance, such as food stamps and Medicaid. The rule was introduced formally in August, when it was then contested several times in district courts until the Supreme Court eventually ruled in the administration’s favor Friday.

Earlier this month, lawmakers introduced legislation condemning Miller for white supremacist ideology expressed in emails obtained by the Southern Poverty Law Center. Miller is widely believed to be the orchestrator of much of the president’s immigration policies.  

“The administration’s inhumane immigration policies have Stephen Miller’s fingerprints all over them, but the full extent of his influence and the intent behind it remains unknown,” said Austin Evers, executive director of American Oversight in a statement to The Hill. “Stephen Miller and his network across the administration should know that their machinations will not remain secret forever.”

The group is suing for email communications, including email and calendar invites between Miller, his staff and specific officials at the Department of Labor, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Department of Agriculture, and the Centers for Medicare and Medicare Services. 

Those agencies did not respond to a Freedom of Information Act requests filed by American Oversight starting in November, leading them to file the lawsuit, as they have in the past.

The records request is part of an ongoing investigation American Oversight is leading into Miller.

The White House did not immediately respond to The Hill’s request for comment. 

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