Lt. Governor Bysiewicz, Attorney General Tong Statements Re: 2020 Census Citizenship Question
(HARTFORD, CT) – Lt. Governor Susan Bysiewicz and Attorney General William Tong released the following statements in response to documents cited in a federal court filing today revealing partisan motivations behind adding a citizenship question to the 2020 Census.
“The information revealed in today’s court filings is disturbing, however, it does not surprise me.” said Lt. Governor Bysiewicz. “The Trump administration has done everything in its power to disenfranchise undocumented immigrants and the communities in which they reside. Connecticut is proud to be a state that does not discriminate against those who are undocumented and we will continue to work with our local census partners to ensure that immigrant communities are protected. There is no place for partisanship in the census.”
Attorney General Tong said, “The revelation of these documents proves what we have argued all along—the citizenship question had nothing to do with protecting voting, and was always intended as a tool to enable partisan gerrymandering. This smoking gun evidence is a major development, and we hope that the U.S. Supreme Court rejects this cynical and unconstitutional ploy.”
Earlier today, the New York Times reported that Thomas B. Hofeller, a leading Republican strategist who died in August, left behind computer files containing evidence that could now be relevant in a Supreme Court case regarding the citizenship question. According to the Times article, the disclosures “represent the most explicit evidence to date that the Trump administration added the question to the 2020 census to advance Republican Party interests.”
In addition to serving as the guide to draw district lines for political representation, the 2020 Census will also be used to determine nearly $11 billion of federal funding for Connecticut. For each person undercounted, the state could lose approximately $2,200 for programs and projects that Connecticut communities depend on.
On February 4, 2019 Lt. Governor Susan Bysiewicz launched the Connecticut Complete Count Committee to inform and help direct the state's efforts in the upcoming 2020 Census. The Committee is an advisory panel of community leaders who represent diverse populations from across the state including elected officials, faith leaders, community health centers, chambers of commerce, community activists and heads of housing authorities. The members work to analyze previous census undercounts and recommend strategies to ensure a full count in Connecticut. The state-wide committee also assisted municipal governments with forming Local Complete Count Committees (LCCC) to promote and encourage response to the 2020 Census in their own communities.