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Iowa Attorney General Miller joins lawsuit to block Census Bureau from demanding citizenship information


This news story was published on April 6, 2018.
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Tom Miller, Iowa Attorney General

DES MOINES — Attorney General Tom Miller — part of a coalition of 18 attorneys general, six cities, and the bipartisan U.S. Conference of Mayors — filed a lawsuit to block the Trump administration from demanding citizenship information in the 2020 decennial Census.

Demanding citizenship information would depress Census participation in communities with large immigrant populations, directly threatening billions of dollars in critical federal funds for education, infrastructure, Medicaid and more.

“We believe everyone should be counted. Adding a citizenship question would undermine participation and accuracy,” Miller said.

Under the Constitution, the Census Bureau has an obligation to determine “the whole number of persons in each state.” Yet demanding citizenship information in the Census is expected to depress participation among immigrants. Non-citizens are required to be counted in the Census for the purposes of federal funds, apportioning of congressional seats and Electoral College votes, and the drawing of state and local districts.

In 1980, the Census Bureau rejected the addition of a citizenship question, saying, “Any effort to ascertain citizenship will inevitably jeopardize the overall accuracy of the population count. Obtaining the cooperation of a suspicious and fearful population would be impossible if the group being counted perceived any possibility of the information being used against them. Questions as to citizenship are particularly sensitive in minority communities and would inevitably trigger hostility, resentment, and refusal to cooperate.”

On December 12, 2017, the U.S. Department of Justice requested that the Census Bureau demand citizenship information in the 2020 census form sent to every household in the United States, even though the Census is supposed to count all persons — citizens and non-citizens alike. The Department of Justice argued that the collection of such information was necessary to ensure proper enforcement of the 1965 Voting Rights Act. Yet as a coalition of attorneys general argued in a letter sent to the commerce secretary in February, the demand would have precisely the opposite effect by driving down participation in immigrant communities — a concern that is even more acute in today’s political climate. The resulting undercount would deprive immigrant communities of fair representation when legislative seats are apportioned and district lines are drawn.

The lawsuit filed today is brought under the Enumeration Clause of the U.S. Constitution, as this action by the Trump administration will impede an “actual Enumeration” required by the Constitution. It is also brought under the Administrative Procedure Act, which permits courts to set aside unlawful or arbitrary and capricious agency decisions.

As the Census Bureau’s own research shows, the decision to demand citizenship information will “inevitably jeopardize the overall accuracy of the population count” by significantly deterring participation in immigrant communities, because of concerns about how the federal government will use citizenship information. These concerns are amplified by President Trump’s anti-immigrant rhetoric and pattern of actions that target immigrant communities.

In 2009, all eight former directors of the Census Bureau dating back to 1979 — who served under both Democratic and Republican presidents — affirmed that a citizenship question would depress participation and lead to a significant undercount, undermining the purpose of the Census itself.

As today’s lawsuit describes, the administration’s decision is inconsistent with the Census Bureau’s constitutional and statutory obligations, is unsupported by the stated justification, departs from decades of settled practice without reasoned explanation, and fails to consider the availability of alternative data that can effectively serve the federal government’s needs.

The lawsuit, which was filed this morning in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, was joined by the attorneys general of New York, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Iowa, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Virginia, Vermont, Washington and the District of Columbia; the cities of New York City, Chicago, Philadelphia, Providence, San Francisco and Seattle; and the bipartisan U.S. Conference of Mayors.

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35 Responses to Iowa Attorney General Miller joins lawsuit to block Census Bureau from demanding citizenship information

  1. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    April 8, 2018 at 10:13 am

    Really ! Are your really so gullable to expect a democrat to give you a census figure that was honest also a word associated with the word honorable -the blue wave in the midterm elections will be a wave OFF for all the Anti American demorats that will be voted out of their elected positions – the only ones that might survive are the corporate owned slackies who can sprew more lies and falsehoods on cnn/abc/nbc not forgetting the illegal votes and voter fraud.

  2. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    April 8, 2018 at 9:24 am

    bodacious pops pimples on tommy millers butt.

    • Avatar

      bodacious Reply Report comment

      April 8, 2018 at 9:27 am

      I didn’t think they allowed 3rd graders on this site. Guess I was mistaken.

  3. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    April 7, 2018 at 10:27 pm

    I’m still waiting for my 10 dollar settlement from when him and his butt buddies sued microsoft years ago . Thanks for nothing tom.

  4. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    April 7, 2018 at 6:09 pm

    Tom Miller was about the last democrat I could support. But with this asinine stance, he’s lost my vote.
    My gawd, are all you democrats losing your frigging minds? Open borders, sanctuary cities, now this? Please leave this country that you all hate so much.

  5. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    April 7, 2018 at 9:04 am

    Get rid of this clown!

  6. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    April 7, 2018 at 8:54 am

    Extra – Law enforcement in Tennessee just raided a meat packing plant and arrested over 100 illegal immigrants ! You think that his renouncing true citizenship in Iowa has anything to do with the huge chinese backed hog slaughter house in Eagle Grove Ia. Is he a party with other not so honest people and corporations who have large vested interest in this state wide project as with all the new DNR vested interests in large CAFO’s (pig farms) in the state of Iowa that are going to need perhaps 1000’s of new workers (does illegal ever enter your mind) This chinese backed operation to raise hogs slaughter them – 10’s Of thousand per day in 1 location and then export the meat to China does not ring a bell ? Our state could possibly be a cesspool within 10 years all for the greed of people like this and his people with vested interests and kickbacks accompanied by fear tactics – scares me and if you had any common sense you would see this for yourself – Demorats are using the Russian fear tactic as a distraction all the while the promoting communist china’s ownership of American. Gee I could be wrong but mamma said my IQ was above 10.] PS Terry was not appointed the U.S.ambassador to China for nothing.

  7. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    April 6, 2018 at 9:25 pm

    This man belongs in prison

    • Avatar

      bodacious Reply Report comment

      April 7, 2018 at 1:28 pm

      You moron. Everybody who doesn’t think like a Trumpanzee belongs in jail in your warped mind. This is America not Russia. We don’t jail our opposition.

      • Avatar

        Let em in! Reply Report comment

        April 7, 2018 at 4:55 pm

        Thank you bodoucheius for sharing your superior intellect with all of us as always, again and again and again and again and again and again.

  8. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    April 6, 2018 at 4:13 pm

    You don’t have to be a gringo to work at China owned CAFO’s and shubble da piggy shit. Greyhound bus driver is my ambition since I get free ride paid for from south america. Thank you branstad /china and aclu. Would like to speek with mr miller he sounds like my type of guy fella.

  9. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    April 6, 2018 at 2:05 pm

    Vote that communist, open border idiot out and get a American as Attorney General.

  10. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    April 6, 2018 at 1:07 pm

    Damn it Tom just do what’s right count Legal American Citizens if you lose money so be it !!

  11. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    April 6, 2018 at 1:05 pm

    It’s kinda like counting dead people to vote. Or the number of kids the schools can get on free lunch. The more free lunch the more federal dollars. To hell with what it teaches the kids or for that matter the parents of the kids. Just stupid pawns in the Marxist educational welfare state

  12. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    April 6, 2018 at 1:00 pm

    They will and have sold their soul for federal dollars !!
    It sickens me !! Losers the bunch of them.

  13. Avatar

    Comment Reader Reply Report comment

    April 6, 2018 at 12:53 pm

    I see we have a Marxist Communist liberal representing the Democratic Party that likes to call people dumbass’s and Trumpanzee’s commenting on here.

    If anyone knows this fool, try to talk sense to him/her. It’s clear whoever he/she is hates any point of view that wants to protect America/Americans and make this country stronger. Some people you can’t talk to and just have to let them be wrong. I am just hoping there may be some “hope” for this delusional individual.

    • Avatar

      Anonymous Reply Report comment

      April 6, 2018 at 1:17 pm

      “I see we have a Marxist Communist liberal…”
      So no name calling, eh? Hypocritcal much?
      Making our country stronger is a great desire of mine. However, we are not going to do that with the chickenshit draft dodging idiot currently in the White House.
      It is the misguided and sheep like people like you that perpetuate this disaster.
      You and your ilk always proclaim that anyone that doesn’t agree with your view points is “Anti-American or Un-American”…..Sig Heil, eh?
      Get a grip, people like you are just the minions & lackeys of the current republican party overseen by the Amercian Führer, Herr Trump.

  14. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    April 6, 2018 at 12:36 pm

    So as an officer of the court, he wants to protect illegal immigrants. What other illegal activities does he protect. maybe protect legal immigrants and iowa citizens instead.

    • Avatar

      Anonymous Reply Report comment

      April 6, 2018 at 12:55 pm

      When do I get represented? This sure insn’t it!

  15. Avatar

    Buzz Crumcutter Reply Report comment

    April 6, 2018 at 11:37 am

    As if sanctuary cities aren’t bad enough, now the Iowa Attorney Generals Office, sounds like its a sanctuary office.

  16. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    April 6, 2018 at 11:00 am

    This moron just showed the people of Iowa that he is liberal obama holdover who has no true American values – MAGA !

    • Avatar

      Anonymous Reply Report comment

      April 6, 2018 at 12:02 pm

      Tom Miller has nothing to do with Obama, you idiot.
      Miller was first elected Attorney General of Iowa in 1978, elected Attorney General of Iowa in 1994, and was re-elected in 1998, 2002, 2006, 2010, and 2014.
      Get a life, you dumbass Trumpanzee.

      • Avatar

        Anonymous Reply Report comment

        April 6, 2018 at 9:43 pm

        “Tom Miller has nothing to do with Obama, you idiot.”

        What about beliefs genius?

  17. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    April 6, 2018 at 10:38 am

    This open border Turd just can KMA.

  18. Avatar

    Former Democrat Reply Report comment

    April 6, 2018 at 10:13 am

    Time for NEW Iowa Attorney General. He just lost my vote.

    • Avatar

      Anonymous Reply Report comment

      April 6, 2018 at 10:30 am

      You may be a former Democrat, but you are a current dumbass.