A group of 31 House Democrats led by leadership of the House Oversight and Reform Committee asked the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) in an October 28 letter to cease work on implementing President Trump’s executive order that would create a new “Schedule F” classification for policy-involved Federal employees, and make it easier to hire and fire them.

The request to OPM to cease work on the executive order follows the introduction earlier this week of a House bill that would nullify the order and rescind any actions that may be taken under it.

That bill was introduced by Rep. Gerry Connolly, D-Va., chairman of the House Government Operations Subcommittee, and Rep. Carolyn Maloney, D-N.Y., chairwoman of the House Oversight and Reform Committee, who led the Oct. 28 letter to OPM Acting Director Michael Rigas.

Citing “grave concerns” about the impact of the executive order, the 31 House Democrats requested that OPM “immediately cease any activities related to the implementation of this executive order while the Committee obtains documents and information regarding the development of this policy and any analyses you or others have conducted estimating or assessing the potential effects of the executive order on Federal employees, agency missions, and services on which the American people rely.”

“The executive order is a harmful attack on the integrity of our government because it will permit the replacement of non-partisan civil servants with partisan Trump loyalists,” the House Democrats said. “Tellingly, it was developed in secret with no consultation whatsoever with our Committee, which has direct jurisdiction over the Federal civil service,” they said.

The House Democrats asked OPM to produce for the Oversight committee by Nov. 11 all documents related to development of the executive order, its impact on Federal agency missions, any input that OPM sought from Federal agency officials, and related communications with officials of the Heritage Foundation.

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John Curran
John Curran
John Curran is MeriTalk's Managing Editor covering the intersection of government and technology.