On Wednesday, former federal prosecutor Mimi Rocah criticized Attorney General William Barr for staying silent as President Donald Trump hijacks the Justice Department to argue for keeping the citizenship question on the 2020 Census — after they already told a federal judge they would move forward without it in the wake of the Supreme Court's ruling against the administration.
As Rocah pointed out, many of these attorneys are career civil servants who go before these same judges hundreds of times — and forcing them to do an about-face based on a presidential tweet severely injures their credibility:
DOJ attorneys put their credibility on the line when they say things to Judges they have to appear before in 100s o… https://t.co/EjDGX49bz7— Mimi Rocah (@Mimi Rocah) 1562197380.0
The citizenship question is broadly considered an attempt to intimidate minorities and undocumented immigrants out of responding, which would decrease the accuracy of the census and shift representation and federal funding to whiter, more Republican areas. The Supreme Court ordered Trump to come up with a better justification for the census change to a lower court, calling the administration's reasoning "contrived."