Tags: Trump Administration | census | trump | citizenship | lawsuit

Judge Reprimands Trump Administration over Census Question, Awards Fees

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By    |   Thursday, 21 May 2020 06:36 PM

A federal judge has reprimanded the Department of Justice for failing to turn over documents in a case about adding a citizenship question to the U.S. Census, awarding attorneys fees but blocking advocacy groups’ requests for more documents and the opportunity to question Trump administration officials.

New York District Judge Jesse Furman, an appointee of former President Barack Obama, granted the requests of several groups, including the ACLU, for the fees on Thursday, chastising Justice Department officials for their explanation of why the documents were not given to the plaintiffs.

An amount was not mentioned in the ruling.

The Justice Department said an error by someone who coded the information in its computer system resulted in the documents not being turned over.

“In other words, (the Justice Department’s) failure to produce the documents was caused by a lapse that would make a first-year litigation associate wince,” Furman wrote.

Furman was one of a series of judges who blocked Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross’ decision to include a citizenship question on the 2020 U.S. Census, saying too many procedural steps were skipped.

In their suit, the advocacy groups claimed that the Trump administration’s motivation for including the citizenship question was an attempt to benefit Republicans and non-Hispanic whites in redistricting. The Justice Department argued it was to enforce the Voting Rights Act.

The advocacy groups wanted more documents and to question Trump Administration officials in addition to the fees, but Furman rejected that saying they already had won at trial and at the appellate level.

“Even if Plaintiffs’ allegations are accurate, that would not have changed the outcome of this litigation,” he wrote.

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A federal judge has reprimanded the Department of Justice for failing to turn over documents in a case about adding a citizenship question to the U.S. Census, awarding attorneys fees but blocking advocacy groups' requests for more documents ..
census, trump, citizenship, lawsuit
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2020-36-21
Thursday, 21 May 2020 06:36 PM
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