Immigration and Citizenship

Comments on Proposed Information Collection on 2020 Census

In Brief

The Constitution requires the Census Bureau to count all persons, not merely citizens.
A new, untested citizenship question would be an end-run around the Constitution’s text, history, and values. It cannot be squared with the federal government’s constitutional obligation to ensure a national count of all persons—regardless of where they are from or their immigration status.
Such a question would result in inaccurate data, thereby biasing congressional apportionment, redistricting, and funding decisions, for an entire decade.

CAC submitted a formal comment to the U.S. Department of Commerce regarding the Trump Administration’s decision to insert a mandatory citizenship question into the 2020 Census.

In our comment, we urged the Commerce Department to remove that mandatory question from the 2020 Census asking all persons to divulge their citizenship status. We explained that the Trump Administration’s “effort to game the Census and manipulate the national head count our Framers wrote into the Constitution should be rejected. Failing to count all persons in the United States, as the Constitution mandates, would deal a huge blow to our democracy. The stakes are high, and there are no do-overs permitted—we must get it right, and get it right now.”

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