Schumer: Courts should block Trump's census citizenship question
© Greg Nash
Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerDemocrats urge Biden to extend moratorium on student loan payments White House draws ire of progressives amid voting rights defeat Murkowski to vote 'no' on voting rights bill MORE (D-N.Y.) ripped the Trump administration's decision to add a question on citizenship to the 2020 census and urged the courts to overturn the move. 
“The census, written about and hallowed in the Constitution, is being distorted by this administration for political purposes. President TrumpDonald TrumpIran claims U.S. to lift all oil sanctions but State Department says 'nothing is agreed' Ivanka Trump, Kushner distance themselves from Trump claims on election: CNN Overnight Defense: Joint Chiefs chairman clashes with GOP on critical race theory | House bill introduced to overhaul military justice system as sexual assault reform builds momentum MORE and Secretary Ross should be ashamed of themselves. Hopefully the courts will correct this glaring abuse," he said in a statement, referring to Commerce Secretary Wilbur RossWilbur Louis RossCommerce Department unit gathered intel on employees, census critics: report Former Trump officials find tough job market On The Money: Retail sales drop in latest sign of weakening economy | Fast-food workers strike for minimum wage | US officials raise concerns over Mexico's handling of energy permits MORE.

The Commerce Department announced the decision on Monday evening over strong objections of Democrats, marking the first time it will be included in the census since 1950.

Democratic attorneys general in several states as well as progressive outside groups have pledged to bring legal action against the decision.

And Democratic lawmakers in Congress have condemned the decision as politically motivated and warned it will alienate immigrant communities after Trump's hardline rhetoric during the champaign. 
House Minority Leader Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiSchumer vows to advance two-pronged infrastructure plan next month Senators say White House aides agreed to infrastructure 'framework' Tim Cook called Pelosi to say tech antitrust bills were rushed MORE (D-Calif.) called it a "a dog-whistle tactic." Meanwhile, Sen. Dianne FeinsteinDianne Emiel FeinsteinHeat wave sparks historically unseasonable wildfires in West Energized Trump probes pose problems for Biden Granholm defends US emissions targets: 'If we don't take action, where are we?' MORE (D-Calif.) said the administration was turning the census into a "political football." 
"Adding a question designed to depress participation in certain communities is an assault on the foundations of this country. Given President Trump’s toxic rhetoric and aggressive policies toward immigrants, it’s clear his administration wants to include this question to discourage participation in immigrant communities," she said. 
Feinstein added that she would "work with California’s leaders to have this citizenship question removed from the census.”
A group of Senate Democrats introduced legislation last week that would prohibit questions on citizenship or immigration status from being included on the census. House Democrats announced on Tuesday that they would file similar legislation. 
Sen. Dick DurbinDick Durbin'Killibuster': Democratic angst grows as filibuster threatens agenda Biden administration to back bill ending crack, powder cocaine sentence disparity: report The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Democrats await Manchin decision on voting rights bill MORE (D-Ill.) added that "politics has no place in the census, but this administration will stop at nothing to push its anti-immigrant agenda." 
But with Republicans in control of Congress, including over what gets a vote in both chambers, Democrats have limited options if they want to undo Trump's actions through legislation. A mammoth government funding bill, which would have been one of their best legislative leverage points, passed last week.