NPR: Appeal To Census Lawsuit Ruling Adds Uncertainty To Citizenship Question's Fate
Published in NPR on
Advancing Justice | AAJC and MALDEF have appealed part of U.S. District Judge George Hazel's decision to the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals
The plaintiffs are challenging Hazel's conclusion that there was not enough evidence showing that the decision to add the question by Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, who oversees the Census Bureau, was motivated by bias against immigrant communities of color, including Latinos and Latinas, and intended to depress census participation among these groups.
These cases were escalated to the Supreme Court by the Trump administration, which has asked for a speedy review of lower court decisions by the justices that bypasses the usual appeals process. The Census Bureau says it needs to know by June whether the citizenship question can be included for the printing of paper census forms to begin this summer as scheduled.
The justices, however, have not been briefed on the issue on appeal to the 4th Circuit by the Maryland-based plaintiffs represented by attorneys with the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund and Asian Americans Advancing Justice [AAJC]. If that case reaches the Supreme Court before the end of its current term, that could put pressure on the justices to resolve over the next few weeks yet another legal issue surrounding the citizenship question.