Today, Thursday, June 27th, the Supreme Court of the United States of America voted 5-4 to NOT add a new question to the 2020 census asking if the person is a citizen or not. BizFed has been advocating to get this question removed, we are pleased with this decision.
However, this narrow ruling of 5-4, doesn’t end this discussion. The court’s ruling delays the addition of the citizenship question at this time but allows the Trump administration to try again later. The one question remaining is, do they have enough time? Most likely not! The deadline for completing the printing of the census forms is December 31, 2020, so they can be distributed in Alaska in January, by law. There is doubt that the Trump administration can get through the court process and inevitable court challenges in time.
Since this mornings ruling, President Trump has requested for his lawyers to look into delaying the 2020 Census until the citizenship question is added, potentially next year.
Why is this important for California and Los Angeles County?
Census data is used to apportion congressional representation and design congressional, state and local legislative districts, and shapes the distribution of $700 billion in annual federal allocations to states and localities. This includes funding for Head Start programs, public assistance, Medicaid, school lunch programs, Section 8 housing, and critical infrastructures such as public transit, hospitals, libraries, and schools. In California, the distribution of $76 billion for federal programs relies on data derived from the census.
Furthermore, Los Angeles County is considered the hardest-to-count county in the nation. With over 10 million residents, LA County is the most ethnically and linguistically diverse; our housing is the most overcrowded; we are home to more immigrants than any other county; our poverty rate is the worst of all 58 California counties. A variety of factors make LA County the hardest to count, giving us the most to lose in an undercount, and posing a huge liability for the state as a whole.
Click here to read the below LA Times Article by David G. Savage, published June 27, 2019.
Supreme Court refuses to approve citizenship question on 2020 census
The Supreme Court dealt a sharp and unexpected defeat to the Trump administration on Thursday, refusing to uphold its plan to ask all households about the citizenship of their residents as part of the 2020 census.
The ruling spares California — at least for now — from a potentially major blow. A question about citizenship was expected to cause a sizable drop in minority participation in the census. The resulting undercount could have led to the loss of at least one congressional district for the state and billions in federal funds, state officials had warned.
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