“Trump’s Controversial Pick to Run the 2020 Census Withdraws”

Ari Berman:

The Trump administration’s controversial pick to run the 2020 census has withdrawn from consideration to be deputy director of the US Census Bureau, according to sources close to the bureau.

In November, Politico reported that the administration planned put Thomas Brunell, a political science professor who has defended Republican redistricting efforts in more than a dozen states, in charge of the decennial census count. He was supposed to begin in late November, according to documents from the Census Bureau released by the watchdog group Protect Democracy as part of a Freedom of Information Act request. But civil rights advocates and Democratic members of Congress pushed back against the appointment.

Now Brunell has withdrawn from consideration, according to two sources who were informed of his decision. Brunell and the Commerce Department, which houses the Census Bureau, did not immediately respond to requests for confirmation.

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