Jeff Sessions

Dumping DACA Will Likely Alter Census 2020 in Ways Favorable to Donald Trump

Feds announce they may share voluntarily provided information to speed up DACA deportations, making illegal-immigrant cooperation with authorities less likely

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||| NBC News
NBC News

Today's controversial announcement by Attorney General Jeff Sessions that the Trump administration in six months will rescind the Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program comes with a government information-sharing follow-up that could have wide-ranging effects on immigrant communities' cooperation (or lack thereof) with representatives from the state.

According to Betsy Woodruff at The Daily Beast, the Department of Homeland Security released a memo today making clear that "Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers will be able to use DACA recipients' personal information to deport them." Meaning, the people who voluntarily handed over their sensitive particulars to the federal government in the hopes of qualifying for non-deportation and a worker's permit may now see that same data used to boot them out of the country.

"Information provided to [the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services] in DACA requests will not be proactively provided to [Immigrations and Customs Enforcement] and [Customs and Border Protection] for the purpose of immigration enforcement proceedings, unless the requestor meets the criteria for the issuance of a Notice To Appear or a referral to ICE under the criteria set forth in USCIS' Notice to Appear guidance," the statement read. More from Woodruff:

"They're saying we will not give your information unless ICE tells USCIS they need it to deport you, which basically means we'll give your information out whenever ICE says it's necessary to deport you," said Leon Fresco, an immigration attorney who represents many DACA recipients. "That's the point."

The United States Census Bureau is currently gearing up for its constitutionally mandated decennial survey of all U.S. residents, legal or otherwise, from which gets derived new legislative districts, formulae for government money-transfers, and—crucially—a rearranged headcount for the House of Representatives. Even prior to today's announcement, the Trump administration's hard line on immigration was making the 2020 task more challenging.

"For immigrants, there's always been a fear that data could be shared with the immigration enforcement arms of the federal government," Arturo Vargas, a member of the Census Bureau's National Advisory Committee on Racial, Ethnic, and Other Populations, told Vox in a piece published Saturday. "Assuring these families that their census data is going to be safe and confidential is going to be a particular challenge for the 2020 census."

Such assurances will be all the more difficult to guarantee given the Bureau's own shameful history of assisting in the notorious World War 2 internment of Japanese-American citizens.

So '90s! ||| Reason
Reason

In the October 1995 issue of Reason, Glenn Garvin wrote a prescient piece about how the inflammatory immigration politics of the time could quickly limit the freedoms of perfectly legal U.S. residents. "When the government stockpiles information," Garvin wrote, in reference to calls for a national identification card "no matter how benign the intent, there is inevitably a malignant mutation somewhere along the way":

Even the supposedly apolitical head counters at the U.S. Census Bureau have been unable to keep their promises not to share their most intimate data with anyone else. During World War I, the Census Bureau provided the Justice Department with names and addresses of conscription-age young men to aid in the apprehension of draft dodgers.

And in an even more infamous case, it helped carry out the internment of Japanese Americans after Pearl Harbor. Each time a roundup of Japanese was planned in a new city, Census Bureau statisticians joined the meeting. They "would lay out on a table various city blocks where the Japanese lived and they would tell me how many were living in each block," recounted Tom Clark, the Justice Department's coordinator of alien control at the time. (Clark, later a Supreme Court justice, gave his account in an oral history for the University of California.) From there it was a simple matter for the U.S. Army to conduct block-by-block sweeps until all the Japanese were safely penned up in barbed wire.

Much more has since come out about that notorious episode, including this good 2015 USA Today piece from occasional Reason contributor James Bovard, who reminds us that "less than a dozen years ago, [the Bureau] provided the Department of Homeland Security with a massive report on how many Arab Americans live in each ZIP code." As is with the police departments in so-called "sanctuary cities" (such as Rudy Giuliani-era New York), Census Bureau pollsters understand the truism that residents who don't trust the Man won't talk to him.

So what happens when illegal immigrants aren't counted correctly? In February of this year, Salena Zito, one of the more perceptive observers of Trump's America, laid out in the New York Post how just a little undercounting here and there could help the president's political bottom line. Excerpt:

Since the Census is the determining factor in the number of House seats allocated to each state, those states with large numbers of illegal immigrants get extra seats (and more power to determine appropriations, electoral votes, etc.) at the expense of others.

States like Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania.

"Three of the four states that swung to Trump in the Upper Midwest lost seats in 2012, after the 2010 Census was taken," [Youngstown State University political science professor Paul] Sracic said. Ohio lost two; Michigan and Pennsylvania, one each. "Meanwhile, Texas gained a whopping four seats, while Nevada gained one."

Your president, America! ||| Twitter
Twitter

More:

Sracic cites an American University study that found, "If only citizens were counted when apportioning House seats, Michigan and Pennsylvania would each see their one seat restored and Ohio would get back one of the two seats it lost after 2010."

Using that same methodology, California would lose five seats and Texas two seats.

Another way of saying all this is that three of the four Upper Midwest states that swung to Trump in 2016 would gain political power — electoral votes, too — if the number of illegal immigrants were reduced or not counted for census purposes in states such as Texas.

So the Trump administration, which is administering the 2020 Census (with the help of a Republican Congress) has material incentive to produce an undercount of illegal immigrants, and a track record of letting politics grossly distort the available research about illegal voting, all at a time when illegal immigrants have material incentive to tell Census takers to get bent. I think it's a safe bet that the House of Representatives after 2020 will not reflect an accurate headcount of the people who live in America.

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  1. Anyone who fills out a census form deserves what they get.

    1. Representation?

  2. you sir are a moron. if this was truly the reason, he would not have encouraged congress to do this legally instead of the shakey unconstitutional way our last president did it. The only thing Obama did with DACA was give the Dept of Homeland Security the names and addresses of all residents that have questionable rights to be here per current constitutional law. There are many ways to manipulate information and voters, just look at how Chicago came up with 15,000 more votes than they had voters in the last presidential election, and they were not voting for Trump. If you are going to make yourself a journalist, trying making news for real research and not speculative bullshit that qualifies for fake news from a hack trying to fill webspace.

  3. Meaning, the people who voluntarily handed over their sensitive particulars to the federal government in the hopes of qualifying for non-deportation and a worker’s permit may now see that same data used to boot them out of the country.

    That Obama, always playing the long game. Meh, if they trusted the United States government they weren’t American citizen material in the first place.

    1. Tricky Barry, sneaking in a few more deportations from beyond the presidential grave.

      But to statists on both sides, trusting the government is precisely what makes someone a good citizen. And technically speaking they’re not wrong

      Still, people respond to incentives. The government promised them an incentive that was on shaky ground, as it often does (see: Social Security). It’s unfortunate, but people will always fall for it. We can condemn them for not knowing any better, but I just feel bad

      I think we’re seeing now that things like DACA are designed with elections in mind, to create the illusion of doing something for your constituents. Common sense would say not to design a government policy that you wouldn’t want your worst enemy to be in charge of. Even Trump’s decisions on DACA and Arpaio might just be meant to distract from the fact that deportations are way, way slower than expected (which is likely from incompetence rather than intent, but either way neither side wants to talk about it)

  4. This all seems a little heady for Trump.

    1. Some days I think Trump is the biggest moron in America. Sometimes I think he may be the smartest person in America. Trump has me in a pretzel.

  5. If California and Texas have seven seats becsuse of illegal immigratuon tgen we have seven rotten boroughs distorting our national political life depriving legal residents and citizens of proper representation in the federal legislature.

    1. According to the fourteenth amendment:

      Representatives shall be apportioned among the several States according to their respective numbers, counting the whole number of persons in each State, excluding Indians not taxed.

      No mention of legal residency, citizenship, or voting eligibility to be found.

      1. All the more reason to show them the door.

        1. Why don’t you go instead? It’s not a virtue to be randomly born on one side of an imaginary line rather than the other.

          1. The “imaginary” line has real consequences with tegarxs to how rights are protected and go ehat extent law rules and not men.

            Also, being born on one side confers citizenship automatically, the other side does not. Do you wish to change that? If so, say it clearly so your fellow citizens can judge honestly.

            An illegal immigrant population that is large enough to distort the electorsl map corrupts our politics.

            1. Not being a libertarian I am less vexed by big-government immigration regulation than you should be. But I suppose it’s fine to have massive exceptions to your stated principles. Just don’t go polishing your halo.

              And it’s a basic principle of our country you are defending so much that you shouldn’t be taxed without representation. I’m not sure why you think an immigrant getting more rights means you get less. Convince them of your brilliant ideas. Being a progressive is not genetically linked to brown skin, you know.

              1. Illegal immigrants cannot vote. They are not being represented in a meaningful way.

                1. Illegal aliens are not supposed to vote.

                  FTFY.

                  There’s no question that illegal aliens do, in fact, vote. A number of localities allow them to vote for local elected positions, so you can be sure that at least some have improperly voted for federal seats, too.

                2. Illegal immigrants cannot vote. They are not being represented in a meaningful way.

                  Neither are you. Your vote means less and less every census – and it ain’t the fault of the illegals.

                  1. You have less than 1/3 the voting power of your 1910 citizen ancestor – 1/7th the voting power of your Civil War era citizen ancestor – 1/25th the voting power of your revolution-era citizen ancestor.

                    Stop playing the useful idiot and pretending that its illegals or browns who are taking away your power. Your power is being diminished by those you elect and they are laughing at you.

          2. Well, having been born on the wrong side of one of those imaginary lines, I can tell you what makes it the wrong side: the people who live there. That’s why I would like the US to be selective about who we let cross this imaginary line so that not both sides end up being the wrong side.

            Now, you’re right: I’d like the US to be able to kick people like you out, but that’s not the law right now. The more libertarian we become, though, the easier it will be not to associate with you, Tony.

        2. Re: Mickey Rat,

          All the more reason to show them the door [so they’re not counted for apportionment].

          Why isn’t this also your argument to “sterilize them coloreds”, I do wonder….

          And don’t you dare act shocked, Mr. Logical Inconsistency.

          1. I am not shocked, i am bored with the lameness of that ad hominem.

          2. Are you accusing him of being a Democrat and supporting Planned Parenthood???

            1. LOL. Yeah, because Dems are killing all the niggers, right? All this even though they’re their most loyal voting bloc. Must be some weird sort of George Soros/Free Mason/Illuminati jujitsu strategy we just don’t understand yet. Yeah, that makes ALOT of sense.

              Margaret Sanger is dead, moron. You fetus fags really need to come up with some new material. Nobody cares anymore.

              P.S. MLK loved Margaret Sanger; same with Du Bois, etc. Look it up, dipshit.

          3. Why isn’t this also your argument to “sterilize them coloreds”, I do wonder….

            You’re the racist prick, you tell us!

    2. Alternately, if California and Texas have seven seats becsuse of illegal immigratuon tgen you should wonder why your laws are such that people who live and work in your country aren’t allowed to participate in the elections of the people who end up representing them in Congress.

    3. We gave women the vote in 1920 – added zero seats to Congress
      Granted citizenship (but not necessarily the vote) to Indians in 1924 – added zero seats to Congress
      Blacks in Jim Crow south get the vote in the 1960s – added zero seats to Congress
      Expanded the franchise to 18 year olds in 1968 – added zero seats to Congress
      Population increases 300% in the last century – added zero seats to Congress

      Roughly 15 million people voted in 1912 – 435 seats in Congress. 137 million voted in 2016 – 435 seats in Congress

      Spare me your faux concerns about illegals forcing some zero-sum deprivation of citizens representation. American citizens don’t give a fuck about their representation and haven’t for the last century.

  6. None of the changes that will come about because of the Census will happen until after the 2020 election, though.

  7. “Dumping DACA Will Likely Alter Census 2020 in Ways Favorable to Donald Trump”

    So, that means implementing DACA was advantageous to the Democrat nominee? Welch, did you support DACA on that basis? If not, then you shouldn’t support it for being disadvantageous to a Republican.

    Again, we’re talking about the separation of powers, here. If you oppose otherwise supportable wars if and when they’re unconstitutional because Congress hasn’t declared them, then you should support the rules for immigration being made by Congress–since that power is enumerated to them in the same place (and for the same reasons) as the power to declare war.

    Oh, and just like I don’t have to pretend that Congress shouldn’t have the power to declare war in order to oppose any particular war, I don’t have to pretend that Congress’ enumerated powers on immigration should be violated just because I want more legal immigration.

    1. So, that means implementing DACA was advantageous to the Democrat nominee? Welch, did you support DACA on that basis? If not, then you shouldn’t support it for being disadvantageous to a Republican.

      Democrats have been supporting illegal migrants and low skill immigrants in order to gain congressional seats for decades.

  8. I don’t think Cheeto-man is looking at that long of a game. A great number of DACA individuals have work permits, so this is about keeping his promised of giving the toilet-cleaning jobs to red-blooded ‘Muricans, as if that was the only thing keeping them lazy bastards from getting off their fat butts.

  9. Unfortunately for his electoral prospects, Trump will have to run against his record for the previous 4 years in 2020 though.

    1. He’s not running in 2020. I don’t mean he’ll be impeached or imprisoned, I mean he really doesn’t want to run and he’s not going to, if he lasts that long.

      1. I could easily see that. He’s also just old.

      2. Will you post a video of your head exploding if he does???

    2. Unfortunately for his electoral prospects, Trump will have to run against his record for the previous 4 years in 2020 though.

      I keep seeing thing like this in comment streams–usually from lefties or city dwellers. Are people really this clueless? I mean, I know the ‘polls’ are all showing how unpopular he is–even more unpopular than when he smashed Hillary Clinton in the election–because the ‘polls’ had been telling us how popular she was. And yes–smashed. I can’t tell you how astonishing it was to watch CNN talking heads reeling off state after state for Trump–I think the only point where she was shown to be ahead was immediately after California was called–and it didn’t last.

      And they had to do this after reporting that some service or another said that she was 90+ percent likely to win. Didn’t they project that on something? So people could see her likelihood of winning crater?

      Trump can coast in in 2020.

    3. Fortunately, he has to run against a Democrat and they’ve accomplished less.

      I’d mention Libertarians…but nobody mentions them anyway.

  10. “Today’s controversial announcement by Attorney General Jeff Sessions that the Trump administration in six months will rescind the Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals…”

    That moment when Reason goes full progressive and says anything Trump does against the Libertarian (big “L” as in the Libertarian Party) is “controversial.”

    What is controversial about ending a program started only a few years ago? What is controversial to a libertarian (small “l”) about ending an unconstitutional program?

    The whole program is controversial for people who care about the Constitution more than their preferred policy goals. I support DACA but know it is unconstitutional, and for this libertarian (small “l”), the ends do not justify the means and ending an unconstitutional program is not controversial.

    1. Rule of law means less and less to Progressitarians at Reason.

      Progressivism Poisons Everything

    2. When everyone on the left says, “This is a horrible action and shouldn’t have been done,” and there are Trump supporters saying, “It’s great that they are sending these illegals home” and there are no-borders libertarians saying, “I disagree with the unconstitutionality of DACA but I approve of the result,” while pro-Constitution libertarians are saying, “I don’t care if the result is favorable or not if the action is unconstitutional,” it is quite reasonable to call the announcement controversial. Even if an action is correct, if there are a lot of people who don’t like it, it *IS* controversial.

  11. While I have no problem with this group being here in no fucking way do I want the retards in California to get a bigger voice in the federal government.

  12. Since the Census is the determining factor in the number of House seats allocated to each state, those states with large numbers of illegal immigrants get extra seats (and more power to determine appropriations, electoral votes, etc.) at the expense of others.

    Pointing out a current *huge* fault in the constitution. States that harbor illegal aliens should not be rewarded with greater political power for doing so.

  13. And how many immigrants are turning out in droves to support the Libertarian Party who have so slavishly supported the open borders policy? None. They vote Democrat, and they vote for statist policies, not pro-liberty policies.

    Nice Reason. Useful idiocy again.

    1. What other principles should be sacrificed in the interest of political expediency?

      1. Apparently opposition to the Imperial Presidency when it creates a policy closer to open borders.

      2. What other principles should be sacrificed in the interest of political expediency?

        If you’re a reason libertarian, all of them, to whichever way the progressives dictate.

  14. I see the open borders rape apologists are out today. Oh fuck these daca kids. Send them all back. And send a rape apologist with them.

  15. So as libertarians, are you against the expansion of government power by executive order, or are you for the opening of borders by executive order? It seems these two ideals are at odds with one another in this instance.

    I guess you could look at it as a reduction of government power by executive order (lessening the governments power to regulate who is within the country). This would eliminate the paradox of supporting DACA and Dreamers, but it would ignore the (literally) thousands of government bureaucrats being used for this endeavor, but sometimes you have to choose the reality you want to see.

    On the other hand, as a libertarian, shouldn’t letting an executive order (which was only meant to be temporary) expire be a desirable outcome?

  16. On Slashdot yesterday, there were people actually arguing that Trump’s DACA recision was an example of executive overreach!

    Good or bad, stupid or brilliant, one President’s pen being used to undo what a previous President’s pen created can hardly be an example of overreach.

  17. Immigration arguments give me tired-head. As others have pointed out the DACA decree is unconstitutional. Rescinding it is a no-brainer.
    http://www.thepublicdiscourse.com/2017/08/19911/
    Is the US a sovereign nation of laws or not? As a minarchist, I respect the US constitution. This is where the progressitarians at Reason lose the argument. Only an anarchistic would want open borders, even if we could ditch the welfare state.

  18. and?crucially?a rearranged headcount for the House of Representatives.

    It is Congress itself that has turned this into a zero-sum divide-and-conquer game. The only guarantee with a fixed-size Congress is that the American people will lose about 8% of their representation every census. So that congresscritters can secure longer careers – so that the executive branch can keep growing far faster than congress can provide oversight – so that big money can still buy majorities cheaply – and so that all the trends towards a mass society that is manipulable by those who understand how to manipulate the human animal can remain in place.

    And you can bet neither the Ds nor the Rs give a rats fuck about changing any of this.

    1. What a fucking crappy ‘city on the hill’ the US has become re our ‘model’ of government:

      India – 2.2 million peeps per critter (and they have an excuse)
      US – 733k peeps/critt
      then Pakistan (573k), Bangladesh (554k), Nigeria (492k)
      California – 490k peeps/critt
      then China (453k), Indonesia (452k), Brazil (395k), Russia (315k), Japan (268k), Mexico (241k)

      before you get to 100-200k normal/reasonable (our big states, bigger Europe, US before we froze), etc

      And we lecture others on both democracy and republics.

  19. How about we turn that around?

    For decades now, Democrats have manipulated the US immigration system in a self-serving way to strengthen their electoral chances while screwing over the American tax payer. Arguablly, Reagan’s amnesty gave Democrats a permanent majority in California, and Democrats would love nothing more than to repeat that across the US.

    Stopping an unconstitutional program like DACA is not enough; hopefully, Trump will enact immigration reform that will permanently exclude low income, low skill immigrants. You know, like other civilized nations do.

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