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Josh Earnest Still Won’t Say if White House Had Role in Green Card Stock-Up

Demonstrators with the groups National Day Laborer Organizing Network, Workers United of Washington and the #Not1More Campaign, protest an increase in deportations and US President Barack Obama's immigration policies outside the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute's Gala Dinner at the Washington Convention Center in Washington, DC, October 2, 2014. Obama is scheduled to speak at the dinner. AFP PHOTO / Saul LOEB SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images

White House press secretary Josh Earnest again refused to say definitively whether anyone in the White House played a role in the increased supplies for the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services to boost its amount of visa-making material.

AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

The agency recently increased its order of the card stock  for issuing new visas, getting enough to make 34 million green cards over the next five years — more than double the number it would normally produce over that period — ahead of anticipated executive action on immigration by President Barack Obama.

"I don’t understand why the White House would have to weigh in on the purchase of paper,” Earnest said Tuesday. “I would be surprised, but I’ve been surprised before if the White House were involved in the purchasing of office supplies at the agency level.”

The answer was a reply to Fox News reporter Wendell Goler’s question on whether the White House had intervened. Last week, CBS News' Major Garret asked a similar question and was told the White House "does not make specific direction to agencies about which supplies they should order."

Goler asked, “So the answer is no? The White House did not direct it?” Earnest ignored the follow-up and moved on.

Ken Palinkas, president of the National Citizenship and Immigration Services Council, said earlier Tuesday that U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services was being set up to be a “rubber stamp” for entry into the country.

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