On June 27, 2019 the Supreme Court of the United States by a vote of 5 to 4, with Chief Justice John Roberts writing the majority decision, ruled the government cannot add the question of citizenship to the U.S. census. The court concluded the current explanation given for the reinstatement of the question is not a “genuine justification,” therefore, it cannot be added to the census unless the government is able to provide legitimate justification. Consequently, the court “affirmed in part and reversed in part” the decision of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.
According to the Secretary of Commerce, Wilbur Ross, the citizenship question was requested to be added on the census by the Department of Justice (DOJ) in order to enhance the data on “citizen voting-age population for purposes of enforcing the Voting Rights Act”. Unfortunately, out of fear, many noncitizens would not reply to the census if a citizenship question were to be added.