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 CummingsOversight Committee reschedules public Cohen testimony for next Wednesday Overnight Health Care — Presented by National Taxpayers Union — Drug pricing fight centers on insulin | Florida governor working with Trump to import cheaper drugs | Dems blast proposed ObamaCare changes Five things to know about Trump confidant Tom Barrack MORE (D-Md.) is calling on Oversight Chairman Trey GowdyHarold (Trey) Watson GowdyThe family secret Bruce Ohr told Rod Rosenstein about Russia case Trey Gowdy joins Fox News as a contributor Congress must take the next steps on federal criminal justice reforms 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 TrumpJustice Department preparing for Mueller report as soon as next week: reports Smollett lawyers declare 'Empire' star innocent Pelosi asks members to support resolution against emergency declaration 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 PelosiWhy Omar’s views are dangerous Pelosi asks members to support resolution against emergency declaration Overnight Defense: Graham clashed with Pentagon chief over Syria | Talk grows that Trump will fire Coats | Coast Guard officer accused of domestic terrorism plot MORE (D-Calif.) called on Congress to take up legislation spearheaded by Rep. Carolyn MaloneyCarolyn Bosher MaloneyAmazon exec invites Ocasio-Cortez to tour facilities after criticism Dem lawmaker rips opposition to Amazon going into New York: 'Now we're protesting jobs' Democrat vows to move forward with impeachment, dividing his party MORE (D-N.Y.) aimed at blocking its implementation Tuesday.

California Attorney General Xavier BecerraXavier BecerraCalifornia has sued the Trump administration 46 times. Here are the lawsuits Dem lawmaker: 'The president has it in for California' The Hill's Morning Report - Can Bernie recapture 2016 magic? MORE said he plans to sue the Trump administration over its decision to reimplement the question.