Trump administration drops citizenship question from census | July 5, 2019 | Mountain View Voice | Mountain View Online |

Mountain View Voice

News - July 5, 2019

Trump administration drops citizenship question from census

by Bay City News Service

The American Civil Liberties Union confirmed Tuesday that the administration of President Donald Trump has dropped its bid to include a citizenship question on the 2020 census.

The administration's action comes after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in a 5-4 vote last week that U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross' reason for including the question — allegedly to aid voting rights enforcement — "seems to have been contrived."

The high court said the agency could not include the question unless it was supported by a reasoned explanation.

The ACLU represented a coalition of immigrant advocacy groups in one of two lawsuits in which the Supreme Court ruled. Those two cases were filed in a federal court in New York and the other one was filed by 18 states and a group of cities and counties, including San Francisco and Monterey County.

ACLU attorney Dale Ho said in a statement, "In light of the Supreme Court's ruling, the Trump administration had no choice but to proceed with printing the 2020 census forms without a citizenship question. Everyone in America counts in the census, and today's decision means we all will."

Four other challenges, including one by the state of California, were filed in federal courts in California and Maryland, but had not yet reached the Supreme Court.

In all six cases, federal trial judges issued preliminary injunctions blocking the question. The states and organizations filing the lawsuits argued that a citizenship question would result in an unfair undercount of non-citizen immigrants and Hispanics.

California officials had estimated a citizenship question could result in an undercount of up to 1.6 million state residents, leading to a decrease in federal funding for public services.

State Assemblyman Marc Berman, whose district includes Mountain View and Palo Alto, said in a statement after the Supreme Court ruling that there was no question that the Trump administration "is intentionally and systematically trying to intimidate Californians."

"Whether you were born here 90 years ago, or moved here yesterday, you are a Californian. Californians don't get bullied, and we don't get intimidated," Berman said.

San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera said in a statement after the ruling, "This decision is a triumph for all Americans and the rule of law. The administration's question was designed to skew the census and undercount the population in a way that benefited Trump's agenda, no matter the cost."

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