Washington (CNN)The Department of Justice informed the House Oversight Committee on Wednesday that President Donald Trump has asserted executive privilege over materials related to the addition of a citizenship question to the 2020 census.
The move comes ahead of a vote in the committee about whether to hold Attorney General William Barr and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross in contempt of Congress over a dispute related to the census and for not complying with subpoenas issued by the committee.
Letter - Committee - Chair - Elijah - Cummings
In a letter to Committee Chair Elijah Cummings, Assistant Attorney General Stephen Boyd wrote, "this letter is to advise you that the President has asserted executive privilege over certain subpoenaed documents identified by the Committee in its June 3, 2019 letters to the Attorney General and the Secretary."
Cummings, a Maryland Democrat, has said that he scheduled the vote because the attorney general and commerce secretary have not complied with subpoenas issued by the committee as it investigates the Trump administration's push to add the question to the census.
Letter - Tuesday - Boyd - Department - Committee
In a letter to Cummings on Tuesday, Boyd noted, however, that the department has "repeatedly informed the Committee that a limited subset of the documents is protected from disclosure," citing attorney-client communications among other reasons.
Boyd stated in the letter that as a result of the scheduled contempt vote, "the Attorney General is now compelled to request that the President invoke executive privilege with respect to the materials subject to the subpoena to the Attorney General and the subpoena to the Secretary of the Department of Commerce."
Committee - Census - Contempt - Resolution - House
The Democratic-led committee will be considering a census contempt resolution that recommends that the House of Representatives find Barr and Ross in contempt of Congress "for refusal to comply with subpoenas." The contempt resolution itself includes citations for both civil and criminal contempt.
It's unclear what will happen after the committee votes on...
(Excerpt) Read more at: CNN
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