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Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross at Fox Business Network Studios in New York City in December. Photo: Roy Rochlin/Getty Images

A federal judge on Tuesday indicated she may move forward with contempt proceedings after Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross defied court orders to continue the 2020 Census, Talking Points Memo first reported.

Driving the news: Ross instructed the Census to end its field operations Oct. 5, despite Judge Lucy Koh's preliminary injunction in San Jose, California, last week allowing the head count of every U.S. resident to continue through the end of October. Koh said Monday Ross was "doing exactly" what she instructed the Trump administration not to in the order, per Bloomberg.

  • Koh's injunction suspended the Census Bureau's deadline for ending the once-in-a-decade count on Sept. 30, reimposing an older Census Bureau proposal to end operations on Oct. 31, according to AP.

Of note: The judge indicated she may look at other ways to hold the government to account, Bloomberg notes.

  • "You don't have to call it contempt," she said. "You can call it something else."
  • The Commerce Department did not immediately respond to Axios' request for comment.

Go deeper: The race to finish the 2020 U.S. Census count

Go deeper

Updated Oct 25, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Trumpworld coronavirus tracker

Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

An outbreak of COVID-19 has struck the White House — including the president himself — just weeks before the 2020 election.

Why it matters: If the president can get infected, anyone can. And the scramble to figure out the scope of this outbreak is a high-profile, high-stakes microcosm of America's larger failures to contain the virus and to stand up a contact-tracing system that can respond to new cases before they have a chance to become outbreaks.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

  1. Health: CDC director defends agency's response to pandemic — CDC warns highly transmissible coronavirus variant could become dominant in U.S. in March.
  2. Politics: Biden readies massive shifts in policy for his first days in office.
  3. Vaccine: Fauci: 100 million doses in 100 days is "absolutely" doable.
  4. Economy: Unemployment filings explode again.
  5. Tech: Kids' screen time sees a big increase.
  6. World: WHO team arrives in China to investigate pandemic origins.
Dave Lawler, author of World
3 hours ago - World

Alexey Navalny detained after landing back in Moscow

Navalny and his wife shortly before he was detained. Photo: Kirill Kudryavtsev/AFP via Getty

Russian opposition leader Alexey Navalny was detained upon his return to Moscow on Sunday, which came five months after he was poisoned with the nerve agent Novichok. He returned despite being warned that he would be arrested.

The latest: Navalny was stopped at a customs checkpoint and led away alone by officers. He appeared to hug his wife goodbye, and his spokesman reports that his lawyer was not allowed to accompany him.