"The inability to fully participate in the democratic process translates into a lack of political power—the power to elect candidates with shared values and the power to enact public policy priorities. As a result, people of color, especially Black people, continue to endure exclusion and discrimination in the electoral process, more than 150 years after the abolition of slavery". quoted from the American Progress Organization.
The Supreme Court on Tuesday ruled that the Trump administration can end census field operations early, in a blow to efforts to make sure minorities and hard-to-enumerate communities are properly counted in the crucial once-a-decade tally. The decision was not a total loss for plaintiffs in a lawsuit challenging the administration’s decision to end the count early. They managed to get nearly two extra weeks of counting people as the case made its way through the courts.
At issue was a request by the Trump administration that the Supreme Court suspend a lower court’s order extending the 2020 census through the end of October following delays caused by the pandemic. The Trump administration argued that the head count needed to end immediately to give the bureau time to meet a year-end deadline. Congress requires the bureau to turn in by Dec. 31 the figures used to decide the states’ congressional seats — a process known as apportionment.
Apportionment is the process of dividing the 435 memberships, or seats, in the U.S. House of Representatives among the 50 states based on the apportionment population counts from the decennial census. The apportionment population count for each of the 50 states includes the state’s total resident population (citizens and non-citizens) plus a count of the overseas federal employees (and dependents) who have that state listed as their home state in their employers’ administrative records.
The resident population counts include all people (citizens and non-citizens) who are living in
the United States at the time of the census. People are counted at their usual residence, which is the place where they live and sleep most of the time.
The resident population also includes military and civilian employees of the U.S. government who are deployed outside the United States (while stationed or assigned in the United States) and can be allocated to a usual residence address in the United States based on administrative records from the Department of Defense.
The resident population counts for the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Island Areas are not included in apportionment calculations (because those areas do not have voting seats in the U.S. House of Representatives), but they are included in other data products.
Note: The resident population counts are available down to the lowest levels of geography (i.e. census block), but only the state totals are used for apportionment. The more detailed resident population data are included in other census data products that are used for redistricting and many other purposes.
Are undocumented residents included in the apportionment population counts?
Yes, all people (citizens and noncitizens) with a usual residence in the 50 states are included in the resident population for the census, which means they are all included in the apportionment counts.
How is the apportionment calculated?
The apportionment of seats in the U.S. House of Representatives is calculated every ten years using the method of equal proportions, according to the provisions of Title 2, U.S. Code. Congress decides the method used to calculate the apportionment. This method has been used in every census since the 1940 census. The method computes "priority values" based on each state's apportionment population.as quoted from census.gov.
On July 21, the White House released a memorandum regarding the 2020 Census with the subject line, “Excluding Illegal Aliens From the Apportionment Base Following the 2020 Census.” In the memo, signed by the president, Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross is ordered, after the census is completed this fall, to remove from each state’s count the number of “illegal aliens” living there. Only then will the census numbers be presented to congress for the reapportionment of the House.
One target in specific is California. “Current estimates suggest that one state is home to more than 2.2 million illegal aliens, constituting more than 6% of the State’s entire population. Including these illegal aliens in the population of the state for the purpose of apportionment could result in the allocation of two or three more congressional seats than would otherwise be allocated.” The president is relying on a 2016 Pew Research Center study that stated there was 2.2 million undocumented residents in California. The same study reported that there are 725,000 undocumented residents in New York State.
So let us now focus now on the recent events. From the debates where we have heard the words, "Stand by and Stand back",, " I'm Speaking", " Ka,,mam,,la, Ka,ba,,la", "Monster", to we have turn the corner. Such words that the only answer would be "democracy requires the full participation of its citizens"
In 2018, The United States Supreme Court gave the approval stamp for voter suppression Husted v. A. Philip Randolph when people skip elections. This is the same tactics being used today in this pandemic to prevent prevent from voting.
The 44th President was the opening for people of color, having the first black Asian minority woman vice presidential candidate can eventually create that opening that will be here to stay which is why it is such a threat unfortunately, But embracing it especially if it leads to victory will start a process of healing. It will not eradicate the persistent problem immediately. The structural reforms and conversations can be started for policies for the future generations not to be also victims.
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