U.S. Supreme Court Blocks Citizenship Question But Rejects Challenges To Partisan Gerrymandering

On the U.S. Supreme Court’s final day before it closes for summer break, justices have forbidden Donald Trump’s administration from adding a citizenship question to the 2020 census, citing the Trump administration’s explanation for wanting to add the question was “more of a distraction” than an explanation.

The administration was found to have violated federal law in the way it tried to add a question, broadly asking about citizenship for the first time since 1950. Census Bureau experts have predicted millions of Hispanics and immigrants would go uncounted if the census asked everyone if he or she is an American citizen.

In addition to the census decision, according to the AP, the court ruled 5-4, rejecting challenges to partisan gerrymandering. Gerrymandering is a practice and or process of an attempt to create a political advantage for a specific party or group by manipulating the boundaries of electoral districts. This process is used to either sway the electoral results in favor of a desired party or deter a particular demographic.

In the decision, the court’s conservative, Republican-appointed majority said that the matter did not belong in federal court and that voters and elected officials should be the arbiters of what is a political dispute.

The court rejected challenges to Republican-drawn congressional districts in North Carolina and a Democratic district in Maryland. Chief Justice John Roberts said for the majority, the districting plans “are highly partisan by any measure.” However, he said courts are the wrong place to settle these disputes. In dissent for the four liberals, Justice Elena Kagan wrote, “For the first time ever, this court refuses to remedy a constitutional violation because it thinks the task beyond judicial capabilities.”

Now, without a solution, according to CNN, Republicans control more than 30 of 49 partisan legislatures in the country, and within the 30, 22 also have a Republican governor.


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