Since the first census in the 1970s, both US taxpayers and non-citizens are included in the nation’s official population count, irrespective of their immigration status, within a procedure which determines national funding and the number of seats each state gets in Congress.
However, Trump’s arrangement, which was expected for months, is the most recent salvo in his government’s ongoing struggle with the Census Bureau.
The president failed in his bid to add a citizenship query to the 2020 census following the transfer that was obstructed by the Supreme Court.
“My Administration won’t encourage giving congressional representation to aliens who enter or stay in the nation unlawfully, since doing this would create significant incentives and undermine the system of government,” Trump wrote Tuesday’s short but strongly-worded memo.
“As we don’t give political power to folks who are here briefly, we should not give political power to folks who shouldn’t be here at all,” he continued.
The memo directs Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross to exclude illegal aliens from the apportionment count but it’s uncertain how Ross would earn that distinction once the citizenship query is illegal.
New York and Ohio dropped two associates of the Home of Representatives following the 2010 census, while Texas picked four.
The arrangement will probably be met with legal challenges from Democrats and authorized professors that are calling the move.
“His unconstitutional EO now, directing a count of just citizens is red meat for his foundation & an attempt to divert from COVID & his other disasters,” he continued.
The state of Alabama is now in the throes of a legal conflict with the Census Bureau claiming illegal immigrants be deducted from population counts since it allegedly gives an unfair advantage to nations with much more undocumented residents.
Based on that a Washington Post report in August 2019, states like New Jersey and California could lose up to 2 chairs in Congress if undocumented immigrants were excluded from the census count.