The Supreme Court must clearly and unequivocally uphold the Constitution by rejecting the Administration’s attempt to sabotage the integrity of census data.  

The Court has already halted the Trump Administration’s previous attempt to manipulate the census and should do so again.

There is no amount of clarifying, narrowing, or maneuvering that the White House can use to argue or repackage this blatantly unconstitutional policy memo. The Fourteenth Amendment of the Constitution is clear – all ‘persons’ are to be counted in the census for purposes of apportionment, without exception for race, gender, age, citizenship, or immigration status.

This attempt to redefine ‘persons’ under the Constitution is an effort to return our nation to its racist policies of the past.  Allowing these efforts to proceed would be antithetical to everything our country stands for. Declaring that immigrants are not ‘persons’ is unconscionable and un-American.

While the Supreme Court must stop these efforts, it is past time that Congress asserts its constitutional authority to ensure a fair and accurate Census 2020, by passing a measure to extend the statutory deadlines for delivering apportionment and redistricting data. Doing so would help allow sufficient time for the Census Bureau to provide the sound data needed for apportionment and redistricting.

Latinos are the second-largest population group in the United States. An undercount of Latinos would mean a failed census, which is unacceptable. NALEO Educational Fund remains committed to a fair and accurate census that includes everyone living in the United States.

Editor’s Note: The above op-ed was penned by Arturo Vargas, CEO of the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO) Educational Fund. He made the comments in response to oral arguments being heard by the Supreme Court on President Trump’s July 2020 policy memorandum that said undocumented immigrants should not be counted for congressional apportionment purposes.

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