Court to hear arguments over citizenship question on the census
The Supreme Court is set to hear arguments over the Trump administration’s plan to ask about citizenship on the 2020 census, a question that could affect how many seats states have in the House of Representatives and their share of federal dollars over the next 10 years.
Three federal courts have blocked the Commerce Department from adding the citizenship question. Those courts have ruled that Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross violated federal law in the way he went about trying to include the question for the first time since 1950. They found that millions of Hispanics, who tend to vote for Democrats, and immigrants would go uncounted.
The lower court judges dismissed Ross’ contention that the question, and the detailed information it would produce on where eligible voters live, is needed to aid in the enforcement of the federal Voting Rights Act.
Two of the three judges also ruled that asking if people are citizens would violate the provision of the Constitution that calls for a count of the population, regardless of citizenship status, every 10 years.