House Oversight and Reform Committee chair Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) announced on Monday that his panel will schedule a vote to hold Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and Attorney General William Barr in contempt for failing to comply with subpoenas as part of the committee’s ongoing investigation into the Trump administration’s efforts to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census.
In letters to both Trump Cabinet members, Cummings wrote that his committee was proceeding with contempt votes after they failed to comply with congressional subpoenas for documents relating to the citizenship question.
“Unfortunately, your actions are part of a pattern. The Trump Administration has been engaged in one of the most unprecedented cover-ups since Watergate, extending from the White House to multiple federal agencies and departments of the government and across numerous investigations,” Cummings wrote.
“The tactics of this cover-up are now clear. The Administration has been challenging Congress’ core authority to conduct oversight under the Constitution, questioning the legislative bases for congressional inquiries, objecting to committee rules and precedents that have been in place for decades under both Republican and Democratic leadership, and making baseless legal arguments to avoid producing documents and testimony.”
Cummings indicated he would be willing to hold off on scheduling the votes if the officials provided requested documents by Thursday.