On Thursday, the US Supreme Court blocked the addition of a citizenship question on the 2020 census with a 5-4 majority. President Donald Trump wanted a citizenship question to be present on the census for the first time since 1950, a controversial move that could shift the balance of power within the House of Representatives.
Adding a citizenship question could result in a change to the makeup of the House. The number of representatives each state has is determined by population, which is recorded by the census, and some feared that immigrants wouldn’t complete their census forms if the question was added.
In a tweet, Fox News host Lou Dobbs seemed to call on Trump to go against the Supreme Court’s decision.
“Is it time for @realDonaldTrump administration to defy this activist court & put question in the Census?” Dobbs wrote. “Who are these Justices to decide what questions can be asked? Activist Courts rule against citizens and for illegal immigrants and open borders.”
A few hours later, Dobbs reiterated the point in another tweet, stating, “High Court is obviously activist and supporting illegal immigration and open borders.”
About one hour and a half after Dobbs’ first tweet, Trump also took to Twitter to air his grievances about the Supreme Court decision and assert that he plans to try and delay the 2020 census.
“Seems totally ridiculous that our government, and indeed Country, cannot ask a basic question of Citizenship in a very expensive, detailed and important Census, in this case for 2020. I have asked the lawyers if they can delay the Census, no matter how long, until the…..,” he wrote.
“…..United States Supreme Court is given additional information from which it can make a final and decisive decision on this very critical matter. Can anyone really believe that as a great Country, we are not able the ask whether or not someone is a Citizen. Only in America!”
It isn’t clear whether delaying the 2020 census is an option, as it is slated to occur every 10 years.
The Justice Department also said that it was “disappointed” by the Supreme Court’s decision. “The Department of Justice will continue to defend this administration’s lawful exercise of executive power,” Kelly Laco, a DOJ spokesperson, stated.
Chief Justice John Roberts, according to a report by Fox News, said the Supreme Court’s decision to block the question was based on “an explanation for agency action that is incongruent with what the record reveals about the agency’s priorities and decision-making process.”
Roberts added that the Supreme Court “cannot ignore the disconnect between the decision made and the explanation given.”
However, the issue could be revisited if the reason given for the change is updated.