Challenge #3: A Citizenship Question TIMELY Update

On February 8, 2019, Dabney L. Friedrich, a federal judge in Washington D.C., ruled in favor of the U.S. Commerce Department by denying a request to block the citizenship question on the 2020 Census. This case, one of several cases across the U.S., was filed by the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC). The plaintiffs challenged the decision to include the citizenship question by arguing that a privacy impact assessment should have been completed prior to adding the citizenship question on Census 2020 form.

On March 6, 2019, Richard Seeborg, a federal judge in California, became the second federal judge to block the administration’s plans for a citizenship question on the 2020 Census. Back in January 2019, New York District Court Judge Jesse Furman was the first judge ordering the administration to remove the citizenship question from the Census 2020 form.

What does this mean?

With one judge (i.e. Friedrich) ruling in favor of the administration and two ruling against (i.e. Seeborg and Furman), the decision now lies in the hands of the U.S. Supreme Court. More information is available here.

More information about EPIC v. Commerce can be found here.

More information on Judge Seeborg’s decision can be found here.

Jason Jurjevich