The first trial suing Wilbur Ross and the Census Bureau over the citizenship question being added to the 2020 decennial census questionnaire kicked off early Monday morning in New York’s Southern District Court.
First witness, Sunshine Hillygus, who spent six years at the Census Bureau and is now a Duke University Professor.
Hillygus: “The Census Bureau itself designates it as a sensitive question.”
Hillygus: “With a very first census, George Washington said: ‘We have a census number, but we think there’s an undercount.’
Here is a good semi-live tweet thread from Courthouse News Adam Klasfeld.
Good morning from New York.
The #2020Census trial is about to begin a bit early. The attorneys are introducing themselves, and U.S. District Judge Jesse Furman has taken the bench.
As the SCOTUS denied a last-minute stay, trial ahead. https://t.co/Hjn4t8Y7tN
— Adam Klasfeld (@KlasfeldReports) November 5, 2018
NPR reports it may turn out that according to a study commissioned by its own Bureau adding the citizenship question could be a “major barrier” for full participation.
In focus groups conducted in March and April to inform the government’s outreach efforts for the census, some participants identified that question as a significant reason why they would avoid taking part in the head count.
“They tended to both believe that the purpose of the question was to find undocumented immigrants and that the political discourse is targeting their ethnic group…”
NPR; Nov 5 2018
According to the Census Bureau website it is against Federal law, Title 13 [pdf], to share private information with FBI, ICE, DOJ or other LE and any “personal information cannot be used against respondents by any government agency or court,” “but the study found,” NPR reports, “that many participants [in the study] did not believe that the government will keep that promise of confidentiality,” and that the “fear is particularly high among Asian and black participants, as well as those who do not have a high school diploma and those with low proficiency in English or the internet.”
Fun fact for the day: According to the “72-Year Rule” the US government “will not release personal identifiable information about an individual to any other individual or agency until 72 years after it was collected.” The next census data 72-year release will be in 2022 for the year 1950. It was in 2012 they released the decennial census records for 1940.
Remember Mr. “I thought it was very nice” David Thomas, the Veterans Affairs official who claimed he was unaware that the portrait he had hanging in his office [with special lighting] of the Ku Klux Klan’s first grand wizard Confederate general Nathan Bedford Forrest, titled, “No Surrender,” and he had to remove it after the Washington Post ran the story?
They did a follow up on just who and what surrounded Forrest’s ‘legacy’.
The Civil War massacre that left nearly 200 black soldiers "murdered" https://t.co/l6hJSrnnU0
— Washington Post (@washingtonpost) November 5, 2018
He was none other than Maj. Gen. Nathan Bedford Forrest, a ruthless slave trader, the first grand wizard in the Ku Klux Klan and the man who led the Confederate forces in a bloody Civil War battle in 1864 that became known as the Fort Pillow Massacre.
Washington Post; Oct 28 2018
Possible elections to watch today
Houston US Congressional District 7 Rated Toss Up
Key Houston Congressional Seat Rated a Tossup in Houston US Congressional District 7 between incumbent John Culberson against Democrat Lizzie Pannill Fletcher. Fletcher contends that Culberson has spent his career “promoting his own pet projects,” “such as encouraging NASA to probe for alien beings on one of the moons of Jupiter,” Courthouse News reported.
Texas Congressional District 7, a crab-shaped home to 800,000 stretching from south and west of downtown to the northwest and north, features the worst and best of Houston. Its diversity is undeniable; so is its gridlock.
With a $73,000 median household income, the 7th is one of the wealthiest districts in Texas. Its population is 44 percent white, 10 percent Asian, 12 percent black and 31 percent Hispanic.
It contains the city’s Chinatown, where some street signs are in Chinese, and the suburb Meyerland, where the faithful flock to a Jewish community center with a Holocaust memorial in the lobby filled with soil from a ghetto in Poland.
A hard rain in District 7 can turn a short commute into an hours-long odyssey as bumper-to-bumper drivers navigate fast-forming ponds and a maze of construction sites.
Courthouse News; Nov 5 2018
State race to watch
Democrats are one seat away from retaking the New York State Senate, a shake-up that could have major implications for the state's futurehttps://t.co/JKyjDNqKM9
— The New York Times (@nytimes) November 5, 2018
The exceedingly tight race to be Georgia's next governor entered its final day embroiled in controversy Monday, after Republican candidate and current Secretary of State Brian Kemp accused Democrats of trying to hack the state’s voter registration system. https://t.co/ZatydjBcuj pic.twitter.com/ewB0Kqrbgp
— Courthouse News (@CourthouseNews) November 5, 2018
Things that could effect tight/toss up races?
Indeed. A grain elevator operator in North Dakota has started putting an immense mound of soybeans on the ground, covered with tarp, for lack of storage space. Challenges for Louisiana river terminals, too, as soybeans are sent south, without adequate storage capability https://t.co/cHGL6IC7EM
— Geitner Simmons (@GeitnerSimmons) November 6, 2018
Rep. Steve King slams GOP for not discriminating against gay candidates https://t.co/0ookiJYrYD
— The Daily Beast (@thedailybeast) November 6, 2018
Congressman Steve King (R-IA) criticized the National Republican Congressional Committee for not discriminating against gay candidates. “They sent money over to support a candidate in a primary in California who had a same-sex partner that they put all over glossy mailers,” King said at a campaign event Monday night. “That’s hard to write a check to those guys when they do that, so I’m hoping we get conservative leadership in the House.” The head of the NRCC last week rebuked King for supporting white nationalist views. Earlier Monday, King raised eyebrows when he made a crack about two liberal members of the U.S. Supreme Court, saying he hoped Justices Elana Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor “will elope to Cuba.”
Daily Beast; Nov 5 2018
NOT a good look for Walker here. At. All.
The deal to bring a Foxconn factory to Wisconsin was initially seen as a boost for Governor Scott Walker's reëlection prospects, but now it is one of the main reasons he has trailed his Democratic opponent, Tony Evers, in nearly every poll since August. https://t.co/OKMpZEOLAJ
— The New Yorker (@NewYorker) November 6, 2018