It’s hard to say that the Democrats have ever seen a President like Trump. The man simply does not give up. Today he suffered a minor setback when the Supreme Court temporarily blocked the citizenship question from making the census.
This is temporarily, because if the government can come up with a better rationale than the one they presented, Roberts is inclined to go along with the Trump administration and the other conservative members of the court.
On Thursday, The Hill reported that President Trump said that he is asking his administration to temporarily delay the 2020 census in light of the Supreme Court ruling blocking the question for the time being.
“I have asked the lawyers if they can delay the Census, no matter how long, until the United States Supreme Court is given additional information from which it can make a final and decisive decision on this very critical matter,” Trump said in a series of tweets, suggesting that his officials will look to provide another reason to be able to ask about citizenship status on the survey.
“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!”
Earlier on Thursday, the Supreme Court ruled 5-4 against the Trump administration over the census citizenship question, finding that the official reasoning for the question was not in line with evidence presented in the case.
The justices, in a majority opinion authored by Chief Justice John Roberts, sent the matter back to the Commerce Department to provide a reasoning more aligned with the evidence.
They also sent the case back down to a lower court for further proceedings.
A delay in the census would be a significant drain on resources, as the survey is often planned years in advance. And Trump’s administration has argued in court filings that it needs to start printing materials by Sunday in order to get the census out in time — a claim President Trump has indicated he is now willing to abandon, having lost in court.
Delaying the census could also spur additional legal challenges, as the Constitution mandates that a census be conducted every 10 years.
Trump’s administration argued that the question was needed to enforce the Voting Rights Act. But opponents of the question said asking about citizenship would cause non-citizens and immigrants to skip the question or the census altogether, leading to an inaccurate count of the population.
“Several points, considered together, reveal a significant mismatch between the decision [Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross] made and the rationale he provided,” Roberts wrote in the opinion issued on Thursday.
He also noted that Ross, whose agency oversees the census, had indicated an interest in asking about citizenship on the 2020 survey early into his tenure. And Roberts wrote that the Justice Department, which enforces the Voting Rights Act, appeared to be more interested in “helping the Commerce Department than to securing the data.”