Federal court blocks Trump plan to exclude undocumented immigrants from census count used to allocate seats in Congress

A federal court is rebuking and blocking President Donald Trump's directive to exclude undocumented immigrants from the census count that's used to allocate seats in Congress.

Posted: Sep 10, 2020 8:38 PM
Updated: Sep 12, 2020 1:44 PM

A federal court is rebuking and blocking President Donald Trump's directive to exclude undocumented immigrants from the census count that's used to allocate seats in Congress.

The court ruled Thursday that the President's July order violates the federal laws that set out how congressional seats are apportioned, and granted a permanent injunction blocking the rule.

The court did not decide if the President's memorandum violates the Constitution.

"We declare the Presidential Memorandum to be an unlawful exercise of the authority granted to the President by statute," the three-judge panel unanimously ruled.

The order is the second blow to the Trump administration's census policies this month. Over the Labor Day weekend, a federal judge in California blocked the administration from immediately winding down census operations.

She is hearing a challenge to the administration ending census counting on September 30, a month earlier than when it redesigned census operations because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The President's July memorandum did not change who would be counted in the 2020 census, which counts every person. But it directed Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross to provide the President with a count of the entire population and a second tally that excludes "aliens who are not in a lawful immigration status."

The order followed the Trump administration's failed effort to ask about the citizenship status of every person during the census count.

The administration abandoned the plan after the Supreme Court ruled it did not believe Ross' justification for asking the question -- to enforce voting protections -- and sent the administration back to the drawing board.

In the wake of that effort, Trump directed the Census Bureau to collect data on citizenship status from other government agencies. His July order instructed the government to meld that data with 2020 census records.

The apportionment challenge was filed by nearly two dozen states, multiple cities and counties, and multiple groups representing minority groups or advocating for a successful census count.

At a court hearing earlier this month, the government argued that the order was within its rights to determine how to make the apportionment tally. But the groups suing the government argued that their communities would lose political power and government funding because of the order.

"This is a huge victory for voting rights and for immigrants' rights," said Dale Ho, an attorney for nongovernmental groups in the lawsuit. "President Trump has tried and failed yet again to weaponize the census against immigrant communities. The law is clear -- every person counts in the census."

Sen. Brian Schatz, a Hawaii Democrat, said on Twitter that the order is "excellent news."

"The Trump administration has been nakedly partisan and dishonest about their administration of the Census," he said.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 112626

Reported Deaths: 3520
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion20832759
Lake10292318
Elkhart6415109
St. Joseph6156102
Allen6029200
Hamilton4724109
Vanderburgh344530
Hendricks2673122
Monroe247436
Tippecanoe226913
Johnson2268123
Clark215056
Porter207845
Cass19329
Delaware188261
Vigo178123
Madison159575
LaPorte137739
Floyd131461
Howard128563
Kosciusko120217
Warrick119936
Bartholomew115357
Marshall98924
Dubois95418
Boone95146
Hancock91143
Grant89133
Noble89132
Henry77024
Wayne74414
Jackson7409
Morgan70038
Shelby66529
Daviess64427
Dearborn63228
LaGrange63111
Clinton59212
Harrison56024
Putnam53710
Lawrence50528
Montgomery50521
Knox5019
Gibson4854
White48114
DeKalb45611
Decatur45439
Miami4263
Fayette41813
Greene41835
Jasper3862
Steuben3707
Scott35610
Sullivan33012
Jennings31212
Posey3060
Franklin29925
Clay2935
Orange28524
Ripley2838
Carroll27013
Wabash2618
Washington2611
Starke2537
Whitley2526
Wells2482
Adams2453
Jefferson2443
Fulton2342
Huntington2223
Tipton21722
Spencer2153
Perry21413
Randolph2087
Jay1730
Newton17111
Owen1651
Martin1640
Rush1524
Pike1401
Vermillion1260
Fountain1182
Pulaski1151
Blackford1133
Crawford1030
Brown1023
Parke941
Benton880
Union770
Ohio767
Switzerland700
Warren391
Unassigned0225

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 145850

Reported Deaths: 4635
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Franklin26242603
Cuyahoga17196644
Hamilton12850309
Montgomery7583152
Lucas7187358
Butler5727102
Summit5172249
Marion307247
Mahoning3002279
Warren294748
Stark2771168
Pickaway263444
Lorain227786
Delaware216620
Fairfield203850
Columbiana192180
Licking187562
Trumbull1852131
Clark175938
Wood173772
Clermont165520
Lake158649
Medina143939
Allen138869
Miami138049
Greene137632
Portage109466
Mercer107717
Tuscarawas91620
Erie91244
Wayne90866
Ross86123
Richland80819
Madison78712
Darke76839
Belmont71227
Geauga70547
Hancock67410
Ashtabula65148
Athens6292
Lawrence61618
Shelby5909
Auglaize5709
Putnam55823
Sandusky55520
Huron5337
Union5002
Scioto4746
Ottawa46630
Seneca45314
Preble42213
Muskingum3802
Holmes3777
Jefferson3284
Logan3013
Henry30012
Champaign2943
Perry2889
Defiance28710
Clinton28213
Brown2812
Knox28015
Morrow2522
Washington25123
Hardin25013
Fulton2371
Jackson2344
Coshocton23111
Crawford2276
Fayette2266
Ashland2244
Highland2203
Wyandot20212
Williams2013
Gallia18612
Meigs17210
Pike1670
Hocking1619
Guernsey1578
Carroll1517
Adams1234
Van Wert1143
Monroe10918
Paulding1050
Harrison622
Morgan470
Vinton453
Noble270
Unassigned00
Fort Wayne
Clear
61° wxIcon
Hi: 80° Lo: 53°
Feels Like: 61°
Angola
Clear
55° wxIcon
Hi: 80° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 55°
Huntington
Clear
58° wxIcon
Hi: 79° Lo: 53°
Feels Like: 58°
Decatur
Clear
59° wxIcon
Hi: 80° Lo: 53°
Feels Like: 59°
Van Wert
Clear
59° wxIcon
Hi: 79° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 59°
Warmer Wednesday
WFFT Radar
WFFT Temperatures
WFFT National

Community Events