Experts say critics of Trump-census question off base


Criticism of the U.S. government’s plan to add a citizenship question to the 2020 Census is based on “speculative assumptions” and “hypothetical future injuries,” charges a brief in a lawsuit by New York states against the Commerce Department.

And it may be that none of the fears materialize, says the friend-of-the-court filing by the American Center for Law and Justice.

Census officials announced they will ask on the 2020 questionnaire whether or not a person is a U.S. citizen.

Open-borders activists immediately went to court to try to stop the effort to determine how many people are in the country illegally.

Without the information, however, the millions of illegal aliens in California could give the state more seats in Congress.

The ACLJ argued the plaintiffs don’t have standing to bring the lawsuit and the executive branch has the authority to take the census.

“Governments across the world have conducted censuses to count their citizen and non-citizen populations, and obtain other useful information, since biblical times. The framers of our Constitution adopted this tradition by mandating that a census be taken every ten years, which has occurred continuously since 1790,” the ACLJ said.

“As our brief notes, the Constitution’s framers intentionally left the details of how each census should be conducted to the discretion of the political branches. The relevant constitutional clause simply states that the census should be conducted ‘in such Manner as [Congress] shall by Law direct.’ Congress, in turn, has given the Secretary of Commerce broad discretion to determine how the Census Bureau should conduct the census,” the AClJ said.

“Additionally, the Constitution includes many provisions that differentiate between United States citizens and other individuals. The Supreme Court has noted that ‘a host of constitutional and statutory provisions rest on the premise that a legitimate distinction between citizens and aliens may justify attributes and benefits for one class not accorded to the other,’ and has also observed that ‘[a] multitude of federal statutes distinguish between citizens and aliens.’”

In its filing in the ongoing case, the ACLJ charged the lawsuit “is based upon speculative assumptions about hypothetical future injuries that may not materialize.”

“Additionally, the extent to which the census seeks information concerning United States citizenship is a discretionary policy decision for Congress, the secretary of Commerce, and the Census Bureau to make.”

The filing said: “Plaintiffs allege that the inclusion of the citizenship question on census questionnaries will cause an undercount in the final census numbers (in 2020 or later) for their particular jurisdictions that will ultimately harm them in various ways. This is pure speculation.

“Plaintiffs have no basis to suppor their conjecture that somehow the accuracy of the 2020 Census will be markedly different than past censuses due to the inclusion of the citizenship question, let alone that each individual plaintiff will be harmed in a concrete, particularized manner by inclusion of the citizenship question.”

And, the filing said, there’s no way to assume any gain or loss of U.S. congressional representation because the citizenship question will be included.”

Critics of the plan contend the question “could scare away millions of immigrants from filling out their mandatory surveys.”



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