U.S. District Judge Jesse Furman has blocked U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross’ attempt to include a question about citizenship on the 2020 U.S. Decennial Census in State of New York et al. v. U.S. Department of Commerce, et al.
The U.S. Census Bureau, which falls under the U.S. Department of Commerce, has not asked a citizenship question since 1950. The census, which measures U.S. population and demographics every ten years, serves to properly allocate House of Representatives seats and helps to appropriate billions of dollars in Federal funds, grants, and support to states, counties and communities.
According to Secretary Ross, the citizenship question was a response to a U.S. Department of Justice request for better citizenship data to enforce the Voting Rights Act and its protections against racial discrimination in voting.