Cummings calls for hearings on citizenship census question

Cummings calls for hearings on citizenship census question
© Camille Fine

House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform ranking member Elijah CummingsElijah Eugene CummingsRep. Cummings: Will Kavanaugh take lie detector test and ask for FBI investigation? Graham to renew call for second special counsel Hillicon Valley: Sanders finds perfect target in Amazon | Cyberattacks are new fear 17 years after 9/11 | Firm outs alleged British Airways hackers | Trump to target election interference with sanctions | Apple creating portal for police data requests MORE (D-Md.) is calling on Oversight Chairman Trey GowdyHarold (Trey) Watson GowdyGowdy requests FEMA administrator’s travel records amid allegations Nunes: Russia probe documents should be released before election Gowdy: House Intel panel should release all transcripts from Russia probe MORE (R-S.C.) to hold hearings on the constitutionality of adding a question on citizenship to the U.S. census. 

His call for the committee to look into the issue comes after the Department of Commerce announced plans on Monday evening to reinstate the question on the 2020 census.  

“I personally spoke with Secretary Ross about this issue, and I am very disappointed that he appears to be disregarding the views of Republican and Democratic experts — including six former census directors — and is instead rushing ahead with a politically-motivated decision that will jeopardize the full, fair, and accurate count our Constitution demands," he said in a statement Tuesday.

"The Oversight Committee has jurisdiction over the Census, and I call on Chairman Gowdy to hold hearings as soon as possible on this issue, as well as other troubling examples of politicization at the Census Bureau under President TrumpDonald John TrumpHannity urges Trump not to fire 'anybody' after Rosenstein report Ben Carson appears to tie allegation against Kavanaugh to socialist plot Five takeaways from Cruz, O'Rourke's fiery first debate MORE,” the statement continued.

The move sparked outrage from Democrats, who argue the change is discriminatory and will lead to inaccurate data on those who reside in the country. 

“People across the country — including in red, blue, and purple states — need to understand that if their communities are undercounted, they could lose critical funds for highways, education, healthcare, and an array of other federal programs," Cummings continued.  "The Trump Administration’s plan to insert a new, untested question on citizenship will increase costs for American taxpayers and decrease the accuracy of the census itself."

Democrats are taking action to try and prevent the administration from following through with the addition. House Minority Leader Nancy PelosiNancy Patricia D'Alesandro PelosiSinema, Fitzpatrick call for long-term extension of Violence Against Women Act Internal RNC poll shows Pelosi is more popular than Trump: report Indicted lawmaker angers GOP with decision to run for reelection MORE (D-Calif.) called on Congress to take up legislation spearheaded by Rep. Carolyn MaloneyCarolyn Bosher MaloneyChelsea Clinton: Politics a 'definite maybe' in the future Women poised to take charge in Dem majority A new urgency to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment MORE (D-N.Y.) aimed at blocking its implementation Tuesday.

California Attorney General Xavier BecerraXavier BecerraIndustry wins big in methane rules rollback Overnight Energy: Watchdog to investigate EPA over Hurricane Harvey | Panel asks GAO to expand probe into sexual harassment in science | States sue over methane rules rollback Some states back plaintiff suing DHS over Haitians' protected status MORE said he plans to sue the Trump administration over its decision to reimplement the question.