UPDATED 1:02 PM PT — Thursday, June 27, 2019
In a 5-to-4 decision the Supreme Court ruled that the Trump administration did not give an adequate reason for adding a citizenship question to the 2020 census. The case will now be kicked back to a lower court.
The administration had argued the question was needed to enforce the Voting Rights Act, while opponents said it would lead to an inaccurate population count because non-citizens or illegal immigrants may refrain from filling out the census at all. Chief Justice John Roberts joined liberals in questioning the rationale for the administration’s effort.
Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross directed the census bureau to add the question last year based on a Department of Justice request, which cited the need for accurate citizenship data. The commerce department has until July 1st to further explain its reasoning for adding the question before the census goes to print.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi commented on the high courts decision Thursday.
“But whether it’s on there or not, that the American people come forward and be counted, it would be a sad occurrence if people said ‘well since it’s on there I’m not going to be counted’ because it means so much in terms of who we are as a nation,” she stated.
President Trump has said the census would be “meaningless” without the citizenship question.
“But I think when you have a census and you’re not allowed to talk about whether or not somebody is a citizen or not, that doesn’t sound so good to me,” he stated.
In a tweet after Thursday’s decision, the president said he asked lawyers to delay the census until the Supreme Court is given additional information. He then slammed the high court, saying its ridiculous that our government cannot ask a simple question such as whether someone is a citizen.
…..United States Supreme Court is given additional information from which it can make a final and decisive decision on this very critical matter. Can anyone really believe that as a great Country, we are not able the ask whether or not someone is a Citizen. Only in America!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 27, 2019