California’s latest contribution to the resistance is “laughable,” Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach said Wednesday.
Appearing on “The Laura Ingraham Show,” Kobach reacted to a federal lawsuit filed by California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, arguing that the plan to ask a question about citizenship on the next census is unconstitutional and illegal.
“I’m sure you laughed when you heard the basis of this,” he said. “I mean, the lawsuits are laughable. The citizenship question was asked from 1820 to 1950 that every person got. Yet, suddenly, it’s unconstitutional?”
California’s argument is that the Constitution requires an accurate population count every 10 years and that asking respondents whether they are U.S. citizens will deter immigrants from participating.
Kobach (pictured above) said that if asking about citizenship violated the Constitution, it might have drawn objections from the men who wrote it.
“The founding fathers were still alive in 1820,” he said. “If it had been unconstitutional to ask someone about their citizenship, you would have thought they might have mentioned it.”
Kobach noted that the Supreme Court in 1964 issued its famous “one man, one vote” ruling holding that it was unconstitutional to dilute a citizen’s vote by having political districts with unequal population totals.
But that is exactly what happens with how seats in the House of Representatives are apportioned following each census, Kobach said.
Under the current system, all residents — whether citizens, legal permanent residents or illegal immigrants — count equally when determining population to assign House seats to each state.
“It’s a loser of a lawsuit, but as we all know, the Left just files lawsuits at the drop of a hat now in the hope that they get a liberal judge.”
“You’re diluting the vote of citizens [from districts] who actually have mostly citizens in their districts,” he said.
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Asking about citizenship on the census will not change that. The Supreme Court ruled two years ago that the Constitution does not require districts to be drawn based on citizens rather than total population.
But opponents fear asking about citizenship is a first step toward changing apportionment.
“It’s a loser of a lawsuit, but as we all know, the Left just files lawsuits at drop of a hat now in the hope that they get a liberal judge,” Kobach said. “And in the 9th Circuit [Court of Appeals], they very well might. And this might have to go to the Supreme Court.”
Kobach rejected the argument that states like California would lose foreign funds if immigrants duck the census form because of the citizenship question.
“The argument is empirically incorrect,” he said. “We have been asking the citizenship question [up to 1950 and later in surveys between census years]. No one ever said that is scaring immigrants from filling out a census.”
(photo credit, homepage and article images: YouTube)