Immigration

Immigration Restrictionists Seek to Weaponize the Census

Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach would prefer to upend the Constitution's directive to apportion House seats based on total population, not voter rolls. So barring that, the author of Mitt Romney's "self-deportation" policy wants Census-takers to ask about citizenship.

|

Keeping the wheat separated from the chaff. ||| Kris Kobach
Kris Kobach

Kansas Secretary of State and gubernatorial candidate Kris Kobach, arguably the country's most influential conspiracy theorist about ever-illusory illegal-immigrant voter fraud, has not let last month's dissolution of his debacle-plagued Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity set back his crusade against alien non-voters. In a Breitbart News op-ed yesterday, Kobach argued that Census Bureau's decennial survey should ask forthrightly about citizenship for the first time since 1950 (a position shared by the Jeff Sessions-led Justice Department), but also that the House of Representatives break with historical precedent by excluding illegal-immigrant aliens from its post-Census reapportionment.

We'll get to the unconstitutional nature of Kobach's latter proposal down below, but first, let's address this historically ignorant claim:

There's no good reason to keep the citizenship question off the census. Nevertheless, the liberal media and liberal groups are calling the question "controversial." But the only justification they offer for keeping the federal government ignorant of how many citizens there are is their ridiculous claim that some people might be afraid to fill out the census form. It's hard to see why anyone would be afraid, when the federal government is prohibited from using census answers against anyone and when the form itself states very prominently that a person's answers "are protected by law."

It is not remotely hard to see why households containing illegal immigrants would be afraid of volunteering that information to agents of the Donald Trump-run federal government. First of all, there's the historical precedent, as pointed out by Glenn Garvin in Reason back in 1995:

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.

More recent Census shenanigans include "provid[ing] the Department of Homeland Security with a massive report on how many Arab Americans live in each ZIP code." That latter bit sounds similar to an effort by Kobach's Election Integrity Commission to (in the words of the Washington Post) request "Texas records that identify all voters with Hispanic surnames." Given that Trump's Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has been prowling local courthouses for aliens to deport, and threatening all jurisdictions that don't cough up immigration-status data to the feds, it is not irrational for illegal immigrants to avoid contact with any government official, let alone those from Washington asking for proof of citizenship. Kobach is on firmer ground when he points that the Census's annual American Community Survey asks about citizenship status, though that is an extrapolative sample, not a total headcount, and has a far lesser impact on government policy.

The chances of Kobach being unaware of the many disincentives for governmental cooperation are roughly zero. After all, he has been a leading national advocate against "sanctuary cities," which means he has heard earfuls of the opposing argument—that, in the 1996 words of then-New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, sharing citizenship information with the feds will dissuade "undocumented immigrants…[from] using city services that are critical for their health and safety, and for the health and safety of the entire city." In fact, Kobach was the advisor who in 2012 helped Mitt Romney come up with the idea of "self-deportation," the whole basis of which is to make conditions for illegal immigrants so fraught and intolerable that they'd prefer to leave. (Romney's immigration stance, never forget, was once called "crazy" and "maniacal" by one Donald J. Trump.)

Since Kobach-style restrictionism is favored by the sitting U.S. president and attorney general, it's well worth taking his views seriously, as a harbinger for what might come soon. That's why his call to upend the way the House of Representatives reapportions seats after each Census is particularly instructive. Immigration hawks just do not accept the Supreme Court's clear interpretation that reapportionment be based on all residents, and so in addition to backing fruitless legal challenges, they will do whatever is in their power to produce an undercount.

The complaints about illegal immigrants unfairly tilting the composition of the House are nothing new: You can find the restrictionist Center for Immigration Studies criticizing the practice back in the 1980s, and there was a round of similar talk in 2010. Back then, National Review—no stranger to restrictionist arguments—published a Bench Memos piece by Matthew J. Franck spelling out pretty convincingly why excluding illegal immigrants and other non-voters was a constitutional non-starter. Excerpt:

After the Thirteenth Amendment's abolition of slavery rendered the "three fifths of all other Persons" a dead letter, the Fourteenth Amendment revised the census clause's language to read (in the amendment's second section) that "[r]epresentatives 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." […]

[V]oting rights are not and never have been the relevant consideration in counting population for congressional representation. Like women in most states before the Nineteenth Amendment, and like minor children even today, the alien is counted because he is represented in Congress, even if he cannot participate in electing members of it. […]

"the whole number of persons in each State" would seem, on its face, to include everyone residing therein, illegally and legally alike. […]

[I]f the result is some advantage to states with more illegals and some disadvantage to those with fewer, the solution to the problem is to do something about our immigration crisis, not to mangle the plain meaning of the Constitution.

Since then, the Supreme Court, in a unanimous 2016 decision, endorsed the notion of adult nonvoter representation in the drawing of political districts. While Evenwel v. Abbott concerned the district-mapping within a state (Texas), not the whole country; and while SCOTUS was careful to narrow the applicability of its ruling, the majority opinion by Ruth Bader Ginsburg made it clear where the Court's sympathies continue to lie. "Nonvoters have an important stake in many policy debates—children, their parents, even their grandparents, for example, have a stake in a strong public-education system—and in receiving constituent services," she wrote. "Total population apportionment promotes equitable and effective representation."

Had Evenwel gone the other way, and should that logic have been applied nationally in a way that Kris Kobach desires, it would have a dramatic impact on the balance of power between Democrats and Republicans, a fact that has not escaped the attention of partisans on either side. "[O]f the 50 districts with the lowest share of adult citizens," RealClearPolitics elections analyst Sean Trende wrote after the Supreme Court agreed to take up the case, "82 percent are represented by Democrats, while Republicans represent 38 of the 50 districts with the highest share of adult citizens. Redistricting would probably move five or 10 House seats toward the Republicans, with proportional gains likely in the state legislatures."

As ratified by Evenwel, Trumpworld chronicler Salena Zito wrote a year ago, "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." You think this hasn't attracted Donald Trump's attention?

As I wrote here a month ago, Trump's controversial pick to run the 2020 Census is Thomas Brunell, a pro-GOP academic gerrymanderer and author of the 2008 book, Redistricting and Representation: Why Competitive Elections Are Bad for America.

So: A partisan immigration restrictionist whose day-job is protecting voter integrity is advocating that the Census ask discomforting questions to illegal immigrants as an intermediate step before overhauling constitutional/historical doctrine of congressional representation; meanwhile a man whose career interest has involved partisan redrawing of electoral maps is set to be in charge of that very same Census. All while the fate of 700,000 illegal immigrants (most of them children) who volunteered their information to the federal government hangs in the balance; congressmen are calling to arrest such people on sight, and ICE's courthouse raids intensify.

It's hard to escape the conclusion that the Trump administration wants illegal immigrants and their families to be undercounted by the Census in a way that helps Republican electoral fortunes, and contributes to the fulfillment of Mitt Romney's once-"maniacal" dream of self-deportation.

NEXT: Donald Jr.'s Trump Tower Meeting Was Not a Crime, and Neither Was Lying About It

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. One more reason to toss the census for into the garbage with the rest of the junk mail.

    1. Meh we kind of need it to run our government, unless you plan on eliminating the House of Representatives.

      1. Actually, all they need to do is verify how many people are living at “x” address and whether they are free persons, tax paying Indians, or other persons?

        All these other questions about income, race, blah blah are just typical government intrusion.

        I always tell the Census people to get the fuck off off my land and if they jump the gate again, I won’t be so nice. They count me as one American and move on.

        1. You’re such a fucking parody of yourself I want to cut myself.

          1. Start with your throat traitor.

            1. Have you ever considered counseling?

              1. You’re the one suicidal because some person on the internet doesn’t like census takers.

                Faggotry was also considered a mental illness until the 70’s.

              2. Tony, I’m counseling you right now, towards suicide. Do it.

              3. I’m making over $7k a month working part time. I kept hearing other people tell me how much money they can make online so I decided to look into it. Well, it was all true and has totally changed my life.

                This is what I do… http://www.onlinecareer10.com

          2. Feel free, nobody would miss you.

        2. Yes. The only questions they ever needed to ask was how many frees, how many slaves, how many Indians. And when we freed the slaves and made the Indians citizens, those last two questions went out the window. But, of course, the questions just increased. Just say no!

          Also, sorry Kobach, but illegals are “free persons.” Maybe it would indeed be more just if they did not count for Congressional apportionment, but that is not what the Constitution says. Ruth Ginsburg might have made your case a bit stronger in practice by offering her silly explanation instead of simply saying, “because the Constitution says so.” But you’re not going to win this one. Illegals might have no business being here, but that does not change the fact that they are here.

          1. I think one thing that is interesting is that this necessarily leads to unbalanced representation in areas with either a lot of non-voting age children, or illegal immigrants, or just non-voters for any reason.

            It’s an interesting problem, that I wonder if might be helped by some sort of proportional representation based on voting, or something. I don’t really have an obvious idea. But it always struck me a bit off that someone who was only voted in by 10% of a population is suddenly the direct representative for 100% of that population. And then if you didn’t vote, perhaps because you did not agree with any option, you are told to just kindly fuck off.

            1. Though I guess this immediately leads to one question that I struggle with and is maybe the core question of my political philosophy. How big a majority, if any, allows us to take away the rights of individual actors?

              1. Oh, this part is easy for me at least: None!

                Democracy is intrinsically worthless. It’s useful only instrumentally; in other words, I think a representative arrangement involving some amount of it is the best way–in a society infused with the appropriate values–of promoting the long-term survival of liberalism. At most I might assign it some intrinsic worth in choosing between public policies of equal liberalism. But that’s it. The public vote is not a mechanism by which “the people” can be at all said to make a collective decision. There is no such thing. Democracy does absolutely nothing to legitimize a state action, to make it any less coercive.

                You might think that this goes without saying, but I have noticed that–especially when democracy is combined with subsidiarity–many libertarians do start talking about “the people choosing” and the virtues of such, and so forth. It’s one thing to venture that democracy and subsidiarity very much tend, in practice, to promote liberalism, or even to hold them intrinsically worthy in addition to (but lexically subordinate to) considerations of liberty. But many libertarians most certainly wander across the line.

            2. You think that’s weird. If you’ve ever talked to people from Northern Ireland, you know that their political system has given them some very weird political values. (But what else is new? This is the place where being “ultra-sectarian Catholic” means voting for the pro-abortion, pro-gay marriage Soviet-backed Marxist terrorists.) There, the intuition is that if, say, Sinn Fein wins the seat for West Belfast, that that MP has a moral duty to represent the voters of Sinn Fein–sometimes even only the members of Sinn Fein. He does not have any duty to represent the interests of the people of his district as a whole. In fact, it would be immoral for him to act in such a way…

              1. …It’s pretty clear our country was conceived into a world in which it never occurred to wring their hands over a situation like the one you bring up. After all, the overwhelming majority of adults with full rights in all other respects could not vote! They were certainly quite comfortable with the idea of a politician receiving a “mandate” from, being selected by, a tiny portion of the people he thought of as representing. We thought we simply were not being represented in London, despite protestations; our factual dispute of that claim was not robustly democratic per se. We then, of course, proceeded over the next century to expand to universal white male suffrage with no fuss whatsoever, even as Europe was tearing itself apart with enormous violence over that very issue during the same time period! Weird stuff.

          2. All the more reason criminal invaders should be relentlessly pursued, arrested, convicted and REMOVED from the United States.

      2. You government-runners can keep the census, but I’m going to pitch mine when it shows up.

        1. 2020 is the next Census Hugh. Watch out! Those fucking census workers get tricky to try and catch you slipping.

        2. Then you’re gonna bitch about what the government does to you in your name, right?

          1. Because if you don’t vote then shut up about who won the election, eh Tony?

            1. I’d say if you deliberately go uncounted in the census you’re expressing a willingness to be governed without proper representation.

              1. So, pick a master, eh?

          2. How naive would I have to be to think that the government does anything in my name?

          3. Doubtful. Hugh Akston loves him some big daddy government. He just doesn’t like it when Trump is charge because he’s all racist and racist and racist and a little bit racist and stuff.

      3. Census is fine. But they don’t need to know anything besides how many people live in your house. All the arguments I hear for collecting the demographic data has something to do with properly distributing money and services.

    2. ………I just started 7 weeks ago and I’ve gotten 2 check for a total of $2,000…this is the best decision I made in a long time! “Thank you for giving me this extraordinary opportunity to make extra money from home.
      go to this site for more details….. http://www.startonlinejob.com

  2. Count legal immigrants all you want for the Census. That makes sense.

    I understand the fears of having to identify yourself as being undocumented, but shouldn’t we be keeping track of that There are districts where 10-20% of the population is there illegally, and apportioning those districts more electoral power does actually steal electoral power from US citizens and legal immigrants elsewhere.

    There isn’t an easy solution here; there is no “fair” option.

    1. But they can’t vote, so how so?

      1. Because they count towards the population for the purposes of apportioning house seats.

        1. So do people in prison and released felons who haven’t had their voting rights restored.

          1. Those people are still citizens. They didn’t lose their citizenship just because they committed a crime.

      2. They aren’t supposed to vote (in federal elections). They can vote in local elections in some places. I’m sure that the number of illegal aliens voting in federal elections and other elections they are not supposed to (legally) is non-zero.

        As to the real extent of illegal aliens voting when they’re not suppose to, we’ll never know because it racist or something to ask people to demonstrate their lawful status before voting. I’ll note that I’d include “being a lawful resident of the district in which one is voting” would be important too, e.g., do snowbirds who own two homes vote in two states?

        1. I would expect that snowbirds should be able to vote at least in local elections that have the potential to impact things like their property taxes – that whole taxation without representation thing being a large portion of why we’re not a crown colony and all.

          It does lend weight to the electoral college as it diminishes the naysayers who say that small states have too much influence since at least a few of those electors come from counting non-citizens who can’t vote. Damn, I’m beginning to think these guys who wrote the disrespected paper Constitution were actually woke* when they did it.

          *1 – To culturally appropriate the young-uns verbicography.

          1. Not in most states. In most states (AZ, CO, CT, DE, IN, MT, NM, ND, TN and WY, excepted), legal residency is the cornerstone of voting rights. E.g., I live in Georgia, but own property in NY state and South Carolina. I cannot vote in either SC or NY, even when they vote on things like raising property taxes. And in Georgia an eligible voter may vote only if he or she is a resident of the county or municipality in which he or she seeks to vote.

            Residence is typically defined as, “the place where a person dwells and intends to remain,” i.e. “domicile.” And for tax purposes, this is a kicker as it usually must include more than 183 days of residency…a 3-month stay over winter does not make a NY City snowbird a Florida resident who owes no income tax; conversely my several weeks at my NY fishing cabin does not make me a NY resident.

            But specifically, I was thinking more of snowbirds voting twice in presidential elections (e.g., in person in Florida in November, and absentee in NY City).

    2. Fair option: you don’t get extra apportionment for harboring illegal aliens

      1. Shouldn’t get an apportion plenty for that. Should get a lengthy prison sentence.

  3. Representatives and direct taxes shall be apportioned among the several states which may be included within this union, according to their respective numbers, which shall be determined by adding to the whole number of free persons, including those bound to service for a term of years, and excluding Indians not taxed, three fifths of all other Persons. The actual Enumeration shall be made within three years after the first meeting of the Congress of the United States, and within every subsequent term of ten years, in such manner as they shall by law direct. The number of Representatives shall not exceed one for every thirty thousand, but each state shall have at least one Representative….
    Fine count all illegals as 3/5 of a person.

    No? Clearly the Census is to be implemented as law dictates. Congress can make a law not counting illegals [period]

    Otherwise get a Constitutional Amendment all typed up to change how the Census is done.

    1. You missed the most important, and already fucked, portion:

      The number of Representatives shall not exceed one for every thirty thousand, but each state shall have at least one Representative….

      If we had stuck with that we wouldn’t be as fucked as we are. They put a cap on that for a reason.

      1. Later in that section, the maximum number changed, but an amendment, of which there is a dispute as to its ratification, sets the limit at 50,000, which would give us greater than 6400 members of the House.
        See: http://www.boldtruth.com/ – not spam or a virus, or anything.

  4. Excellent piece. I continue to wonder why Charles Koch recently said “I’m more excited about what we’re doing and about the opportunities than I’ve ever been. We’ve made more progress in the last 5 years than I had in the previous 50.” Am I the only one?

  5. Unless states are going to divy their territories into equal geometric shapes for apportionment purposes, congressional districts will always be political.

    1. Yeah, I normally don’t like tu quoque arguments but isn’t Matt’s argument the exact flipside of the one which posits that Democrats want as many illegals as possible to beef up their power? Both team play politics. Imagine that.

  6. “Nonvoters have an important stake in many policy debates?children, their parents, even their grandparents, for example, have a stake in a strong public-education system?and in receiving constituent services,”

    Based on previous writings here, it was my understanding that immigrants of a certain subset do not partake of the dole.

    1. Anyone using the public education system is “on the dole”?

      1. If they are illegal alien foreign invaders who aren’t even supposed to be in the country, yes.

        1. How about a typical middle-class family sending their kids to public school? Are they “on the dole”?

          1. The ones paying all the sales and property taxes? No, thy aren’t. They’re getting out less than they put in so that freeloading Mexicans can get out more than they put in. The middle class family probably isn’t partaking of free breakfast and lunch paid for by the feds and distributed through the schools either.

            1. “Freeloading Mexicans”. Classy.

              So your standard for if someone is “on the dole” is if someone receives more in benefits than they pay in taxes? Then guess what, by your standard, about 60% of the country is “on the dole”.

              http://taxfoundation.org/60-pe…..pay-taxes/

              So it is quite likely, actually, that the middle-class couple with kids in public school, and the “freeloading Mexicans”, are both on the dole. At least according to your standard of what the “dole” is.

      2. There are many ways in which illegals get taxpayer support. As just one example, every illegal alien’s child is entitled to a public school education (even if the child is also illegal) and the average cost of this education is $11,000 per year (2014 figures). An illegal alien’s child enrolled in first grade will cost the taxpayer $132,000 to graduate from high school. This $132,000 of course becomes unavailable to educate the children of citizens and legal immigrants.

        So a $15 billion wall will pay for itself if it deters about 120,000 illegal aliens of child-bearing age from crossing the border illegally.

  7. I find it difficult to be very concerned about the prospect that the census might not be answered by people who shouldn’t legally be here in the US to begin with.

    Let’s pose a hypothetical: Suppose that, while the Census was being conducted, the Mexican army happened to cross our border and set up camp in the Alamo. Would they have to be counted?

    Unless the answer is “Yes”, I don’t see why illegals would have to be counted, as they are present in the country contrary to law, the expressed will of the government. They are invaders, not inhabitants.

    And if your answer to that question is “Yes”, good luck persuading many people.

    1. Migrants ? invaders.

      1. In that particular example, both have crossed the border illegally. The migrant/invader distinction is irrelevant here.

        What matters is if invaders get counted as ‘free persons’ same as migrants – they both entered the country illegally. And if not, how do you make the distinction where illegal immigrants are ‘free persons’ and the Mexican Army is not.

      2. Tell that to La Raza and their Reconquista.

      3. Illegal immigrants most certainly *are* invaders.

      4. Illiegal aliens are not migrants

        US citizens will decide who gets to migrate to the US
        Until they change their minds, illegal aliens are illegal aliens

        1. Exactly, buybuydandavis.

  8. “[O]f the 50 districts with the lowest share of adult citizens … 82 percent are represented by Democrats, while Republicans represent 38 of the 50 districts with the highest share of adult citizens. Redistricting would probably move five or 10 House seats toward the Republicans”

    So Democrats represent children and Republicans represent adults and that might change. Can someone explain why that is inherently bad?

  9. the fate of 700,000 illegal immigrants (most of them children) who volunteered their information to the federal government

    70% of “dreamers” are age 20 or over.

    1. They are all adorable children or grandmothers! Just like refugees

      1. All snuggled in their cribs, dreaming big dreams!

  10. Welch missed the big story about the 2020 Census, The Trump Admin did away with the Obama plan of adding a new MENA (Middle Eastern/Northern African) racial category.

    https://tinyurl.com/y7yxfn63

    1. Whew. It’s hard enough gerrymandering based on the existing pigeonholes. Who needs another one to deal with.

  11. I suppose one could argue that illegal immigrants are Indians, not taxed… they don’t pay income or payroll taxes.

    If they do file an income tax form, then presumably they would be willing to fill out a census form.

    More accurately, they don’t owe income tax and if they don’t have a “legal” job they aren’t paying FICA.

    1. I suppose one could argue that illegal immigrants are Indians, not taxed… they don’t pay income or payroll taxes.

      Of course they do, It’s called withholding. But they can’t get the benefits. They subsidize SS and Medicare to the tune of $100 billion in the last decade.

      If they do file an income tax form,

      They don’t. It starts with the phony Social Security number they use, which the IRS has been setting aside for a few decades now,

      1. They can and do file a return to get the EITC which they are legally entitled to.

        1. And the refundable child tax credit, which does not require parents or children to have valid SSN. Several billions of dollars (IG report cites $4.2B/yr, however not all that is necessarily for illegal alien kids) go to illegal alien families via this mechanism. And the tax cut just double the per child tax credit to $2000 ($1400 refundable). So that number is just going to go up.

          factcheck.org:

          Not all Democrats defend the payments. In the Senate, Claire McCaskill of Missouri called the IG report “alarming” and asked the IRS to act. “While the total amount of payments to unauthorized workers is enormous, the trend lines are even more disturbing,” McCaskill wrote in a letter to IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman on Sept. 7, 2011. “Wrongful payments of refundable tax credits, should be easy to identify and stop. The law is clear that individuals who are not authorized to work in the United States are not entitled to public benefits.”

      2. If the have an under-the-table job, they probably are being subjected to withholding…that was Bubba Jones implication in using the phrase ‘if they don’t have a “legal” job they aren’t paying FICA.’

        1. they probably AREN’T being subjected to withholding

          argh

          1. I know exactly zero individuals who do withholding from the cash they give the guy that mows their lawn.

      3. Record $135 billion a year for illegal immigration, average $8,075 each, $25,000 in NY

        Quote:
        The swelling population of illegal immigrants and their kids is costing American taxpayers $135 billion a year, the highest ever, driven by free medical care, education and a huge law enforcement bill, according to the the most authoritative report on the issue yet.

        And despite claims from pro-illegal immigration advocates that the aliens pay significant off-setting taxes back to federal, state and local treasuries, the Federation for American Immigration Reform report tallied just $19 billion, making the final hit to taxpayers about $116 billion.

    1. Best what?
      Examples of biased “reporting”?
      This guy seems to be trying to be more obnoxious than Shitca about invaders on our territory getting away with breaking the law.

  12. So barring that, the author of Mitt Romney’s “self-deportation” policy wants Census-takers to ask about citizenship.

    Goddamnit, so those right wingers in the 90s were right? Fuck! I can’t keep up!

  13. Without the toilet question, the government might not know that even in 2015, there are nearly 2 million Americans in rural communities without indoor plumbing.

    So answer those intrusive questions. It’s the only way you’ll get help!

    1. Reason doesn’t give a fuck about the federal government requiring you to answer questions about your sexual and toilet habits under penalty of prison. Just don’t ask Consuela about her legal status.

  14. Given that the census is used to apportion representatives – in Congress and state legislatures – even I, as a pretty darn supportive-of-open-borders guy – think the citizenship question is pretty darn important and needs to stay in there.

    1. Illegals aren’t filling out the census anyway.

    2. If they’re really worried they can lie – just like anyone else can (and most of us do). What are they going to do, arrest them?

    3. IMO the only questions that should be on the census is a) how many people in the household? and b) how many of them are adult citizens. Any and all information collected beyond that is just used to screw people over – the census was weaponized several generations ago.

  15. It’s pretty silly that we’ve strayed so far from the constitution that the census doesn’t really work anymore for it’s purpose given that ‘population’ meant something different pre-protectionist America.

  16. “the whole basis of which is to make conditions for illegal immigrants so fraught and intolerable that they’d prefer to leave.”

    You say that as if it’s a bad thing.

    The census is already weaponized by allowing and encouraging states to get more congressional representation from illegal aliens. If a state wants to encourage illegal alien invaders to stick around, they shouldn’t be rewarded for it.

  17. It’s interesting with all the “collusion” talk about Russia during the past year that no one talks about the collusion with Mexico and other countries to keep importing cheap foreign labor (both legal and illegal) to drive down wages of the poor and middle class and make the gap between the rich and the poor bigger.

    If Democrats and globalists actually cared about Americans, they’d stop importing the third world to lower their wages and replace them and their culture.

  18. I’d favor a Constitutional amendment that said that for Congressional apportionment purposes, only citizens will be considered.

    Illegal aliens should not skew California to get several (I’ve seen 6) more Representatives than they would if only citizens were counted for apportionment.New York and Texas both have one additional Representative due to illegal alien population.

    1. Second

      I bet the amendment would be popular

      But I don’t think an amendment should be required.

      See comment linked below
      https://goo.gl/Apbz6Z

  19. This all comes down to defining the full illegal immigrant problem. People on both sides seem to ignore the overall impact the massive number of illegals have on legal immigrants and citizens. Are illegals getting government assistance…that legal immigrants are not? How many are unemployed or underpaid due to the glut of illegals willing to work for less. How many business types are donating some of their excess profits ( above normal due to lower illegals wages) to continue supporting illegals? Just how much are the illegals costing the US yearly? Lastly, why are the illegals coming here…shouldn’t there be a big exposition on why things are so bad in Central and South America. Just what is wrong there that so many choose to escape?

  20. So let me get this straight… people who are here illegally, who cannot vote, have an effect on how electoral districts are proportioned?

    I hereby deem this the…

    FIVE THIRDS COMPROMISE OF CALIFORNIA
    Preamble: It is hereby decreed that each voting age citizen in California, to account for the large number of illegal aliens among their populace, shall each have a vote worth no less than five thirds of each vote of all other citizens of our Great Nation Under God, no matter the state they reside in.
    Text: Read the above.

  21. Open Borders types never want the peasants to know the truth about illegal aliens, always doing their best to hide their existence from the peasants.

    Isn’t it odd?

    They tell us that immigrants are so wonderful, such an unalloyed boon to the country, but are so reticent about collectiving data to demonstrate which would unequivocally *prove* to this to be the case.

    I wonder why that is.

  22. but also that the House of Representatives break with historical precedent by excluding illegal-immigrant aliens from its post-Census reapportionment.

    Good! It’s a ridiculous precedent!

    It’s hard to escape the conclusion that the Trump administration wants illegal immigrants and their families to be undercounted by the Census in a way that helps Republican electoral fortunes, and contributes to the fulfillment of Mitt Romney’s once-“maniacal” dream of self-deportation.

    Correct conclusion.

    arguably the country’s most influential conspiracy theorist about ever-illusory illegal-immigrant voter fraud, has not let last month’s dissolution of his debacle-plagued

    Reason, arguably one of the country’s most irrelevant rags advocating overthrowing the rule of law and flooding the country with welfare recipients that will make an already disastrous fiscal situation even worse, etc. etc..

    1. Libertarian Moment!

  23. Thanks for finally conceding that illegal immigrants are a key to Democratic Party politics and expand Democratic Party districts. You’ve been lying about that for about a decade now so it’s good that we can all finally agree on that.

  24. On apportionment, have we ever counted tourists as “persons” tallied for apportionment?

    Residence Rule And Residence Situations For The 2010 Census
    https://goo.gl/v6fHyV
    Citizens of foreign countries who are visiting the U.S. on Thursday, April 1, 2010 (Census Day), such as on a vacation or a business trip – Not counted in the census.

    So – apparently we don’t count visitors, and “persons” is not *literally* taken to mean every person.

    So Congress apparently does have some role in defining which persons do and do not count.

    Illegal aliens are visitors, and illegal ones at that. Why count them toward apportionment?

    Particularly with the 14th amendment making *reduction* of apportionment for citizens who can’t vote. If you don’t get apportionment for a citizen who can’t vote, why should you get apportionment for illegal aliens who also can’t vote (legally, at least)?

    I don’t think a Supreme Court case on apportionment for illegal aliens is as cut and dried as Reason indicates.

    1. Better to just remove the illegals.

    2. Reason? Not give all the facts? Say it ain’t so.
      Maybe they should be highlighting how the SC decision riding on the use of “persons” in the second section of the 14th, is using just the first sentence and not delving into the breakdown that comes after:
      “But when the right to vote at any election for the choice of electors for President and Vice-President of the United States, Representatives in Congress, the Executive and Judicial officers of a State, or the members of the Legislature thereof, is denied to any of the male inhabitants of such State, being twenty-one years of age, and citizens of the United States, or in any way abridged, except for participation in rebellion, or other crime, the basis of representation therein shall be reduced in the proportion which the number of such male citizens shall bear to the whole number of male citizens twenty-one years of age in such State.”
      Clearly, the writers of this odious amendment intended for citizens to be part of the apportionment, and those who weren’t or who were Confederates or criminals, were not to be included.
      And the list of offices for which a legal vote can be cast is pretty inclusive.

  25. It is not remotely hard to see why households containing illegal immigrants would be afraid of volunteering that information to agents of the Donald Trump-run federal government.

    So, you’d be OK with this if the government were run by anyone else.

  26. I don’t know where Matt is getting his information, specifically about the citizenship question not appearing since 1950, but a quick Google search for the actual 1990 and 2000 census surveys shows that in 1990 the question appeared as :”9. Is this person a CITIZEN of the United States?” and the same question appeared as Question #8 in 2000. In fact, the first recent census not to contain the question was the one done in 2010.

    1. On the long form questionnaire for 2000 it is question #13.

      “Is this person a CITIZEN of the United States?”

    2. Facts? In a REASON article, especially about invaders on our soil?
      It is to laugh.

    3. Where is Matt getting his information?

      From his leftist masters, of course.

      Fakenews designed to make it seem that a thing done under Obama was actually the norm. When it was an aberration.

      And most people won’t check. It’s too small a thing. But they’ll remember it when the subject comes up again–‘I heard that we stopped asking that, like, literally 60 years ago. They only want to bring it back because they idolize the 50s.’……and it will take residence in more people’s heads.

  27. I’m making over $7k a month working part time. I kept hearing other people tell me how much money they can make online so I decided to look into it. Well, it was all true and has totally changed my life. This is what I do,

    +_+_+_+_+_+_+_+_+ http://www.homework5.com

  28. I’m making over $7k a month working part time. I kept hearing other people tell me how much money they can make online so I decided to look into it. Well, it was all true and has totally changed my life. This is what I do,

    _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ http://www.homework5.com

  29. From posts here it sounds like the constitutional issue may be arguable either way… But the truth is that’s only because the founders, and later amenders, fucked up… As they did on many sections. They figured clear meaning would be followed as intended. WRONG. They figured common sense would be used. WRONG.

    I guarantee if Washington or Jefferson saw what is going on, they would say OBVIOUSLY you should only count citizens. Because duh. As mentioned we don’t count tourists, so this should be fought in court. If the retain counting illegals, nothing is lost… But if they throw it out it would be a clear step in the right direction.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.