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The Journal Gazette

Friday, March 15, 2019 1:00 am

Politics

Make Mueller report public, House votes

Associated Press

WASHINGTON – The House voted unanimously Thursday for a resolution calling for any final report in special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia investigation to be made public, a symbolic action designed to pressure Attorney General William Barr into releasing as much information as possible when the probe is concluded.

The Democratic-backed resolution, which passed 420-0, comes as Mueller appears to be nearing an end to his investigation. Lawmakers in both parties have maintained there will have to be some sort of public resolution when the report is done – and privately hope that a report shows conclusions that are favorable to their own side.

Shanahan: Allies' bill won't increase

Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan said Thursday the Pentagon has no plans to force allies to pay dramatically higher costs for hosting American forces in their countries, saying reports of a steep increase are wrong.

Shanahan told the Senate Armed Services Committee that allies need to pay their fair share, but compensation comes in many forms, including providing support for war in places like Afghanistan.

Shanahan also took questions on the decision to put $98 billion into a war account outside the Pentagon's base budget, to stay within congressional spending limits.

Ross defends self on census issue

Democratic lawmakers accused Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross on Thursday of secretly orchestrating the addition of a citizenship question to the 2020 census, citing an email they say shows he misled Congress about the decision.

Rep. Elijah Cummings of Maryland, chairman of the House Oversight and Reform Committee, said documents show Ross engaged in a campaign to add the question soon after he joined the Commerce Department.

Ross testified before the panel in an often contentious hearing. He stuck with his explanation from previous hearings that Justice Department officials made a formal request to include the citizenship question to help it enforce the 1965 Voting Rights Act.