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Citizenship Question Will Not Appear on 2020 Census

July 12, 2019
On July 11, President Donald Trump announced that a citizenship question will not appear on the 2020 Census, ending months of speculation and litigation into the matter.
President Trump has issued an executive order directing federal agencies to supply the Department of Commerce with all records regarding the population of non-citizens in the country and will use this information to complement Census data in 2020.

Shortly after the ruling, Gov. Gavin Newsom released a statement saying that “California won’t back down. Our state will continue to move forward with an unprecedented $187 million outreach campaign to make sure all Californians are counted.” Additionally, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra released a statement saying, “We encourage everyone to complete the census form and remember that individual information collected by the Census Bureau is confidential and protected by law. Now it’s time to get to work to ensure a fair, legal, and accurate count.” California Secretary of State Alex Padilla also released a statement reminding Californians that “Even with this victory, the hard work of achieving a complete count in 2020 remains. This Administration has created a very real fear of the federal government in many communities, but the stakes of the census are too high for any Californian to sit it out.”

The National League of Cities (NLC) Principal Associate for Finance, Administration, and Intergovernmental Relations, Brian Eagan also released an article saying, “The rhetoric surrounding the debate to add a question has already damaged trust in the census. Community leaders will need to continue their work to build trust in the process and undue some of that damage. The goal of every community has not changed. Every city, town and village needs to be counted fairly and accurately. Local leaders serve an invaluable role in making sure that happens by partnering with the Census Bureau and convening trusted voices to serve as champions.”

For more information and resources on what California cities can do to ensure a complete Census count in their communities, visit the League’s resource page, explore NLC’s toolkit, or connect with the California Complete Count Census 2020 website.

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