By Jon Dougherty
In every session, the U.S. Supreme Court has at least one or two cases the outcome of which have the potential to be monumental for the country, and the high court’s latest session, set to wrap up in less than two weeks, is no exception.
One of the potentially game-changing cases has to do with whether or not the Trump administration will be permitted to add a question regarding citizenship to the 2020 Census.
The administration has argued that asking the question — which the government did until around 1960 — is necessary to help enforce federal voting rights laws and lead to a more accurate accounting of the U.S. population writ large.
However, Left-wing civil rights groups argued that adding the question would lead to an undercount of minorities, which is a tacit admission by those same groups that there are millions of people in the country illegally.
As to the recent history of asking the question on the Census form, NPR noted:
The last time a citizenship question was among the census questions for all U.S. households was in 1950. That form asked where each person was born and in a follow-up question asked, “If foreign born — Is he naturalized?”
In 1960, there was no such question about citizenship, only about place of birth.
The high court will be deciding whether the question is both lawful and constitutional, according to experts.
Carrie Severino, chief counsel and policy director of the Judicial Crisis Network, said the question is really “unremarkable” because it has been asked in one form or another for most of our history.
“It’s very foundational that a country ought to know how many citizens it has,” she told Fox News. “It’s something the United Nations recommends its member nations do.
“This is something that should be totally unremarkable,” she continued. “The fact that it is even being challenged shows a disturbing trend toward pushing back on the very concept of citizenship.”
She added that it’s “frightening” to think there could be “several justices” on SCOTUS who don’t think that citizenship is an appropriate question for the government to ask.
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