President Donald Trump remains harshly committed to his anti-immigrant stance, which led him this Monday to beefing with the Census. He claimed on Twitter that the upcoming 2020 version of the effort would be “meaningless” without a question included about respondents’ citizenship — although just to be clear, it’s been decades since all households were asked the question. The Trump team again wants to drag the nation into the past.
‘Can you believe that the Radical Left Democrats want to do our new and very important Census Report without the all important Citizenship Question. Report would be meaningless and a waste of the $Billions (ridiculous) that it costs to put together!’
Since the 50s, questions about respondents’ citizenship status have only appeared on long-form questionnaires delivered to a minority of Americans and in the American Community Survey, a modern project from the Census Bureau to chronicle American demographics outside the context of the once-in-a-decade, comprehensive census.
The Trump administration sought to change that early on, but they quickly faced multiple legal challenges that culminated in federal courts striking down their efforts, which they justified by claiming the question would help them enforce the Voting Rights Act. The U.S. Supreme Court is set to review the administration’s appeal of the first judicial strike against their efforts on April 23.
The push fits into a broader picture of the Trump administration’s efforts to target immigrant communities that’s included similar measures like trying to usurp the powers of local law enforcement for federal immigration authorities. Those efforts, including an attempted denial of funding to so-called “sanctuary” jurisdictions like California where authorities have refused to muddy their policing with cooperation, have also been blocked in court.
As in those cases, advocates are concerned that mixing legitimate government efforts with the Trump administration’s continual witch hunt for undocumented immigrants could cause immigrants as a whole to turn away. The effect of including the citizenship question on the census could be the exact opposite of the increased legitimacy Trump claims would ensue, as one of the federal judges to rule against the proposal — U.S. District Judge Richard Seeborg — noted.
Check out Twitter’s response to the president’s latest ranting…
Featured Image via screenshot