World News – US – Supreme Court lets Trump sabotage eleventh hour census

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In a superficial and unsigned order, the Supreme Court authorized the Trump administration to suspend the census on Tuesday, bringing the 2020 census to a premature and possibly permanent halt Only Judge Sonia Sotomayor noted her dissent.The court ruling virtually guarantees that over the next ten years, immigrants and racial minorities will enjoy reduced representation in Congress and state legislatures, which will give Republicans an undeserved electoral advantage until 2030

For several years, Donald Trump has sought to sabotage the census by any means necessary. He has sought to lock up an « undercount » of Blacks, Latin Americans and Native Americans, as well as immigrant communities – all of them traditionally Democratic voters Trump initially sought to add a citizenship question to the census, which would dramatically reduce response rates for immigrants and Hispanics When the Supreme Court blocked this system, its administration changed course: instead it chose to rush the census, producing an undercoverage that will disproportionately exclude minorities. The Census Bureau adopted a compressed schedule that would compromise its accuracy It also operated with less than half of the 2010 census workforce

Even after the pandemic forced the office to suspend operations and natural disasters in the West and South hampered data collection, the administration refused to extend the tally On the contrary, the secretary at Commerce Wilbur Ross, who oversees the census, has actually pushed back the deadline to Oct 31 to Sep 30 Ross asserted that this change was necessary to meet the Dec 31 Congressional deadline for data reporting

In September, a federal judge reinstated Oct 31, and a federal appeals court refused to lift this order The Justice Department therefore asked the Supreme Court to intervene SCOTUS accepted the invitation of the DOJ on Tuesday afternoon, staying the judge’s injunction while the appeals court considers the case and until SCOTUS either takes it or dismisses it This ruling effectively allows Ross to end the census immediately. did not explain his reasoning

In dissent, Sotomayor pointed out that the government’s justification for ending the census prematurely makes no sense: he had already said that no matter when it ended, the census office could because of the calamities that have befallen the country this year But « their history keeps changing, » Sotomayor wrote skeptically, and Ross now insists the office can meet the deadline if it abruptly ends the operations

Shutdown is sure to lead to undercoverage in at least some states « The government is trying to minimize this risk by claiming that over 99% of households in 49 states are already represented, » Sotomayor wrote She continued:

But even a fraction of one percent of the nation’s 140 million households equals hundreds of thousands without enumeration.And significantly, the percentage of non-responses is likely much higher among marginalized populations and in hard-to-enumerate areas, such as rural and tribal lands When governments allocate resources using census data, these populations will disproportionately bear the burden of inaccuracies. It is therefore not surprising that, for the 2010 census, the Bureau continued its field operations for an entire month after reaching the 99 percent threshold that the government now considers sufficient. The damage caused by this year’s census rush is irreparable And respondents will experience their lasting impact for at least the next 10 years

Sotomayor is right The government’s blunt claim that its collection efforts are 99% complete isn’t particularly heartwarming in a country of 330 million people Census data is used to break down not only districts from Congress to the House of Representatives, but also to state legislative districts In many states there are less than 10,000 people per legislative constituency So while 99% may seem like a solid response rate, it could still lead to a unequal representation for undercounted communities If even a few thousand people are undercounted, lawmakers will draw district boundaries that, in reality, do not give equal weight to everyone’s vote Areas with more minority communities will be under-represented in the legislature As Sotomayor explained, this is why the Obama administration extended the 2010 census for another month after achieving a 99% response rate

The Trump administration is now taking the opposite approach: Facing unprecedented obstacles – including an ongoing pandemic that has prevented the Census Bureau from hiring enough staff to complete the enumeration – it has cut a months of operations The Supreme Court has now approved the ruling, ending the 2020 census When lawmakers start redistributing their states in 2021, vulnerable Americans will pay the price

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United States Supreme Court, 2020 United States Census, President Donald Trump, Sonia Sotomayor, Census

World News – United States – Supreme Court leaves Trump sabotage the census in the Eleventh hour


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