Well, we have some good news. When it looked like all was lost on the citizenship question for the 2020 census, the Trump White House has taken down the white flag of surrender at least for now. The Department of Justice announced today that they would be looking into legal avenues concerning ways to add the question onto the survey. DOJ spokesperson Jodie Hunt said the department had “been instructed to examine whether there is a path forward, consistent with the Supreme Court's decision, that would allow us to include the citizenship question on the census"
A day after pledging that the 2020 census would not ask respondents about their citizenship, the Justice Department reversed course on Wednesday and said it was hunting for a way to restore the question on orders from President Trump.
Officials told a federal judge in Maryland that they thought there would be a way to still add the question, despite printing deadlines, and that they would ask the Supreme Court to send the case to district court with instructions to remedy the situation.
President Trump had been frustrated with Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross for mishandling the White House’s effort to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census, according to an administration official, and said on Wednesday that he was “absolutely moving forward” with plans to add it despite a Supreme Court decision rejecting the move.
It was only yesterday that it was announced the forms would be printed without the question, a blow to the Trump administration. It looked like they had outright caved. The president fired back on those claims, however, and it goes back to a fundamental issue concerning this undertaking by the government: should people who can’t vote here even be counted in the census. Democrats have used the illegal alien population to increase their clout on the Hill. Of course, they see nefarious intent because it strikes at the heart of their artificial power base. Either way, for the time being, the issue isn’t over yet.
A very sad time for America when the Supreme Court of the United States won’t allow a question of “Is this person a Citizen of the United States?” to be asked on the #2020 Census! Going on for a long time. I have asked the Department of Commerce and the Department of Justice....— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 3, 2019
....to do whatever is necessary to bring this most vital of questions, and this very important case, to a successful conclusion. USA! USA! USA!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 3, 2019
The News Reports about the Department of Commerce dropping its quest to put the Citizenship Question on the Census is incorrect or, to state it differently, FAKE! We are absolutely moving forward, as we must, because of the importance of the answer to this question.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 3, 2019
SOURCE: The DOJ reversed course to Judge Hazel, told them that they've been "ordered" to try to get the citizenship question back on the census, and that no final decision has been made yet, but their "current plan" is to go directly to SCOTUS to bless whatever they decide.— Mike Sacks (@MikeSacksEsq) July 3, 2019
There it is >> Top DOJ official Jodie Hunt in hearing: "We at the (DOJ) have been instructed to examine whether there is a path forward, consistent with the Supreme Court's decision, that would allow us to include the citizenship question on the census."https://t.co/N5Fct1tp28— Jeremy Diamond (@JDiamond1) July 3, 2019
The Supreme Court ruled had ruled a 5-4 decision that the question and the legal issues surrounding it should be referred back to the lower courts. It was not ruled unconstitutional, though, as Katie noted, the Court wasn’t all that clear as to reasoning why the Commerce Department wanted the question on the survey. The lawyers from that agency appeared to have fumbled the ball. The issue here was time. With the lower courts reviewing, it was very likely that there would have been no time to resolve this matter in an appropriate time frame. Well, put a hold on that; let’s see what happens.
Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross yesterday: “The Census Bureau has started the process of printing the decennial questionnaires without the question.” https://t.co/ykvFjMtJUF— Kaitlan Collins (@kaitlancollins) July 3, 2019