Census to include controversial question on citizenship status
iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — The Trump administration announced on Monday their plans to include a controversial question about citizenship status to the upcoming 2020 census, a move that has sparked backlash from civil rights groups and Democratic lawmakers alike.
This will be the first time since 1950 that a question about citizenship status is asked on the census, the Department of Commerce said in a statement released Monday evening.
The agency said the citizenship question will help to ensure enforcement of the Voting Rights Act, a 1965 law created to ensure minority access to the polls.
Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross’ announcement comes on the heels of a request from the Department of Justice to reinstate the question. A citizenship question is a late addition to the census as other census questions have already been announced.
Critics of a citizenship inquiry on the census say asking about citizenship status, will decrease participation in the census of non-citizens at a time of increased national anti-immigration sentiment.
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