Democratic senators urge Ross to print 2020 census materials without citizenship question

Democratic senators urge Ross to print 2020 census materials without citizenship question
© Getty Images

A group of Democratic senators on Friday called for Commerce Secretary Wilbur RossWilbur Louis Ross2020 census to run ads on 'Premio lo Nuestro' Can the US slap tariffs on auto imports? Not anymore On The Money: Slowing economy complicates 2020 message for Trump | Tech confronts growing impact of coronavirus | Manufacturing rises after five-month contraction MORE to move forward with printing 2020 census materials that don’t include a citizenship question, after the Supreme Court blocked the question on Thursday for the time being.

In a letter to Ross led by Sen. Brian SchatzBrian Emanuel SchatzKudlow claims coronavirus has been contained: 'It's pretty close to air-tight' Booker, Merkley propose federal facial recognition moratorium Poll: Majority of Democrats say Electoral College delegates should cast ballots based on popular vote MORE (D-Hawaii), the 28 senators urged Ross “to uphold the rule of law and respect the court’s decision.”

And they warned that “any unnecessary delay” ahead of the 2020 census “would impact the ability of the Census Bureau to count every person in our country.”

ADVERTISEMENT

“By continuing to pursue the citizenship question, you will further delay and jeopardize the Census Bureau’s ability to conduct a full, fair, and accurate decennial census as required by the U.S. Constitution and the Census Act,” the letter reads.

“We urge you to stop all efforts to add a citizenship question and allow the Census Bureau to proceed with preparation for a 2020 census without a citizenship question on the questionnaire.”

The letter’s signatories included Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerTrump passes Pence a dangerous buck Democratic mega-donor reaching out to Pelosi, Schumer in bid to stop Sanders: report Trump administration freezes funding for study of hurricane barriers: report MORE (D-N.Y.), as well as Sens. Dick DurbinRichard (Dick) Joseph DurbinDemocrats introduce bill to reverse Trump's shift of military money toward wall Overnight Energy: EPA to regulate 'forever chemicals' in drinking water | Trump budget calls for slashing funds for climate science centers | House Dems urge banks not to fund drilling in Arctic refuge Democratic senators criticize plan that could expand Arctic oil and gas development MORE (D-Ill.), Patrick LeahyPatrick Joseph LeahyDemocrats introduce bill to reverse Trump's shift of military money toward wall Republicans give Barr vote of confidence Democratic senators ask DOJ watchdog to expand Giuliani probe MORE (D-Vt.) and Mark WarnerMark Robert WarnerCongress eyes killing controversial surveillance program This week: House to vote on legislation to make lynching a federal hate crime Congress set for clash over surveillance reforms MORE (D-Va.).

2020 Democratic presidential candidates Sens. Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerDemocrats' Obama-to-Sanders shift on charter schooling This week: House to vote on legislation to make lynching a federal hate crime Juan Williams: Black votes matter MORE (N.J.), Amy KlobucharAmy Jean KlobucharBiden looks to shore up lead in S.C. The Hill's Campaign Report: Gloves off in South Carolina Lawmakers grill Ticketmaster, StubHub execs over online ticketing MORE (Minn.), Kirsten GillibrandKirsten GillibrandNow is the time for a US data protection agency The Hill's Campaign Report: Warren up, Bloomberg down after brutal debate Ginsburg, accepting lifetime achievement award, urges working fathers to take an active role in kids' lives MORE (N.Y.), Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisBiden looks to shore up lead in S.C. House passes historic legislation to make lynching a federal hate crime This week: House to vote on legislation to make lynching a federal hate crime MORE (Calif.) and Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenBiden looks to shore up lead in S.C. Hillicon Valley: Dems cancel surveillance vote after pushback to amendments | Facebook to ban certain coronavirus ads | Lawmakers grill online ticketing execs | Hacker accessed facial recognition company's database Push for national popular vote movement gets boost from conservatives MORE (Mass.) also signed the letter.

Ross announced in 2018 that the 2020 census, which his department oversees, would include a question asking about citizenship status. He argued that it was necessary to help the Justice Department enforce the Voting Rights Act.

But the Supreme Court on Thursday ruled that Ross’s rationale didn’t match up with evidence presented in a lawsuit challenging the citizenship question’s inclusion, and blocked the question’s inclusion for now.

The justices sent the matter back to the Commerce Department to provide another reasoning for the question that better aligned with the evidence.

The Trump administration had said in court documents that it needed to finalize materials by June 30 in order to meet a July 1 printing deadline.

However, President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump passes Pence a dangerous buck Overnight Health Care — Presented by American Health Care Association — Trump taps Pence to lead coronavirus response | Trump accuses Pelosi of trying to create panic | CDC confirms case of 'unknown' origin | Schumer wants .5 billion in emergency funds Trump nods at reputation as germaphobe during coronavirus briefing: 'I try to bail out as much as possible' after sneezes MORE tweeted after the Supreme Court’s ruling on Thursday that he was asking administration lawyers about delaying the 2020 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.”

That opens the door for the administration to put off printing census materials as it continues to fight in court for the citizenship question’s inclusion.