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Weiner writes: "The dizzying and absurd saga over whether the 2020 Census will include a question about citizenship is still, somehow, ongoing."

A protest about the census changes. (photo: J. Scott Applewhite/AP)
A protest about the census changes. (photo: J. Scott Applewhite/AP)


Trump's Racist Census Fight II: New Look, Same Bigotry

By Sophie Weiner, Splinter

08 July 19

 

he dizzying and absurd saga over whether the 2020 Census will include a question about citizenship is still, somehow, ongoing. The issue seemed to be put to bed when the Justice Department announced earlier this month that the question wouldn’t be included. Then, to everyone’s shock, President Trump contradicted his own administration, claiming the question would be included.

The Supreme Court has already rejected the Trump administration’s reasoning for including the question. Now, DOJ officials are left trying to figure out a workaround to please their boss. Trump even suggested using an executive order to put the question on the census.

On Friday, the DOJ admitted in court documents that it was basically out of ideas. So it’s not surprising that on Sunday, the DOJ announced a new team would be assigned to the issue, according to the Washington Post.

The team of attorneys who have been working on the case will be replaced, the DOJ told the Post in a statement.

“As will be reflected in filings tomorrow in the census-related cases, the Department of Justice is shifting these matters to a new team of Civil Division lawyers going forward,” Justice Department spokeswoman Kerri Kupec told the Post.

Sources told the Post that some of the lawyers previously on the case had concerns about how the administration had handled the issue, though the subject of those concerns isn’t known.

It’s worth remembering that this entire mess is the result of Trump and the GOP’s visceral desire to undermine democracy. The citizenship question would almost certainly result in underreporting of populations in areas with heavily immigrant populations, who may be afraid of reporting their citizenship status on the census. This undercount of populations in majority-Democrat districts could then lead to less political representation for those districts.

This is the plan that was laid out in the files of the late Dr. Thomas Hofeller, the Republican National Committee’s former redistricting chairman. Trump tried to use executive privilege to prevent lawmakers from accessing Hofeller’s files.

In Hofeller’s analysis of Texas legislative districts, he found that excluding non-citizens from the census “would be advantageous to Republicans and non-Hispanic whites.”

“Without a question on citizenship being included on the 2020 Decennial Census questionnaire,” Hofeller wrote in one file obtained by the ACLU, “the use of citizen voting age population is functionally unworkable.”

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+3 # DongiC 2019-07-08 14:29
When it comes to the mechanics of voting, the Republicans sure know how to suppress votes, gerrymander, reduce polling places, install new identification cards and, in general, just cheat. Their aim is usually directed at minority groups who don't exactly favor the GOP. Such is suffrage in the 21st century of America.
 
 
-2 # Rodion Raskolnikov 2019-07-09 10:38
"In Hofeller’s analysis of Texas legislative districts, he found that excluding non-citizens from the census “would be advantageous to Republicans and non-Hispanic whites.”"


This is probably true but no one is proposing excluding non-citizens. They will be counted just like everyone else. Many people will avoid being counted but that always happens in every census.

The issue is whether or not there will be a question on one's citizenship. What nation?

There will be no questions about one's sexual orientation or gender identity other than M or F.

Questions of race will be the same as 2010 where they were very extensive and allowed anyone to fill in the appropriate racial and ethnic identity.
 
 
-3 # Depressionborn 2019-07-09 11:35
Good gosh Dong, What's wrong with being a citizen in order to vote?
 
 
0 # Rodion Raskolnikov 2019-07-09 13:38
Where I live, non-citizens are allowed to vote in local elections. The rationale is that the work, pay taxes, send their kids to public schools, and do all the other things citizens do. They just have to keep an eye out for the immigration police. They have social security numbers and pay into social security and medicare.

Something needs to be done about long term residents who are not citizens. Right now, they cannot apply for citizenship because they would be discovered, arrested, and deported. There needs to be a general amnesty -- just let everyone apply for citizenship or a green card. Get it over with.

And count them in the census and include them in the re-jiggering of congressional districts. Assume they are participating fully in US society - they work, they go to school, and so on.
 
 
-1 # Depressionborn 2019-07-09 15:48
yes but. it would become open immigration. We had that once, but it required a 5 year sponsor. My family came that way. Had to learn English and accept our laws and Constitution.
 
 
0 # BetaTheta 2019-07-11 14:30
All the above comments studiously ignore the true intent of the question, which is exactly what Hofeller declared it to be: to advantage the white Republicans who are fast becoming a minority.
 
 
-2 # Depressionborn 2019-07-09 11:42
The US Constitution stated in Amendment XV, which was ratified by the states in 1870: "Section 1. The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude.
Voting is hardly racist
 

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