Trump Ignores the Constitution
Once again, Trump has decided that he can overrule the Constitution of the United States.
Section 2 or the 14th Amendment reads: “Representatives shall be apportioned among the several states according to their respective numbers, counting the whole number of persons in each state, excluding Indians not taxed.” Until Trump, this provision has been interrupted to mean that all persons resident in a state should be counted excluding only those who are in the United States for a short period such as tourists.
Ignoring the Constitution, today Trump signed a presidential memorandum excluding all undocumented immigrants:
“it is the policy of the United States to exclude from the apportionment base aliens who are not in a lawful immigration status under the Immigration and Nationality Act, as amended (8 U.S.C. 1101 et seq.), to the maximum extent feasible and consistent with the discretion delegated to the executive branch
Interestingly, Trump does not specify how the immigration status of a person will be determined for the purpose of the census. The Supreme Court has already ruled the Trump cannot include a citizenship question. See: https://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/18pdf/18-966_bq7c.pdf
We may have some indication of what Barr and Trump plan from the following passage in the memorandum:
In Executive Order 13880 of July 11, 2019 (Collecting Information About Citizenship Status in Connection With the Decennial Census), I instructed executive departments and agencies to share information with the Department of Commerce, to the extent permissible and consistent with law, to allow the Secretary to obtain accurate data on the number of citizens, non-citizens, and illegal aliens in the country. As the Attorney General and I explained at the time that order was signed, data on illegal aliens could be relevant for the purpose of conducting the apportionment, and we intended to examine that issue.
This section suggests that Trump intends to have the Department of Commerce adjust the final count in each state for apportionment based upon data collects on the number of non-citizens and illegal aliens in the country. The implication is that Trump would have the census count in any state REDUCED for apportionment purposes by the number of non-citizens and illegal aliens the U.S. Government estimates are present in a state-based data collected by executive departments and agencies.
Trump argues in his memorandum that he, and he alone, has the authority to determine who is an “inhabitant” for the purpose of apportionment and that he has the authority to exclude from the census count any person he determines does is not have " lawful immigration status.”
The discretion delegated to the executive branch to determine who qualifies as an "inhabitant" includes authority to exclude from the apportionment base aliens who are not in a lawful immigration status.
Basically, Trump is taking the power to adjust the census count as he sees fit to “exclude” as many illegal aliens as he alone determines are present in any state. In short, Trump’s thumbprint will lay heavy upon the census count that will determine how many representatives each state gets to send to Congress. You can be sure that states that are pro-Trump will be found to have very few, if any illegal aliens, while states that are anti-Trump will be found to have so many illegal residents that the census count for those states has be to be drastically reduced “in order to obtain an accurate Trump count.”
Today, Trump took one more step toward making himself the total and absolute LEADER WITH UNLIMITED POWER.