Trump just took executive action to get around obstacles to adding a citizenship question to the 2020 census
- President Donald Trump took executive action to get around obstacles to including a citizenship question on the 2020 census on Thursday.
- The executive order will require federal departments and agencies to give information on citizenship and non-citizenship to the Commerce Department.
- As a result, there will not be a citizenship question on the 2020 census as the administration will attempt to collect that data through other means.
- Previously, the Supreme Court decided the administration had not properly justified their reasoning for adding the question.
- Citizenship questions have been on the census under past administrations in other capacities, such as long-form questionnaires.
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"Knowing this information is vital to formulating sound public policy, whether the issue is healthcare, education, civil rights, or immigration," he added. "We must have a reliable count of how many citizens, non-citizens, and illegal aliens are in our country."As a result, there will not be a citizenship question on the 2020 census as the administration will attempt to collect that data through other means.Trump described efforts to stop the citizenship count as "part of a broader left-wing effort to erode the rights of the American citizen and is very unfair to our country."
The executive action is the latest attempt to get around what have been several obstacles to adding the citizenship question to the 2020 census since the Supreme Court decided in June that the Trump administration's justification for adding the question was not sufficient.
The process has also been the subject of investigation by the House Oversight Committee, which has gone as far as to hold Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross in contempt of Congress for failing to cooperate with Democrats.The executive action on Thursday is also likely to face legal action from opposition groups. Organizations like the American Civil Liberties Union have already vowed to challenge the White House decision.
"The Supreme Court has spoken. The Trump administration's effort to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census is unlawful," said ACLU Voting Rights Project Director Dale Ho in advance of the executive action. "If President Trump takes executive action, we will take legal action."
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer railed against the looming executive action earlier Thursday during a speech on the Senate floor."Well, we all know what's going on here. The Trump Administration doesn't have a legitimate legal rationale," he said. "Their true motivation was even clear before the papers of that deceased designer of this question came to light. The true rationale is blatantly political and self-serving."
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