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Census 2020
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Ross: Citizen question does more harm than good for census

(Win McNamee/Getty Images)

The Supreme Court took up the census case on Tuesday, and experts are already predicting the court will allow the 2020 census to include the “are you a citizen?” question.

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Many Democrats are convinced that the real agenda here is to scare immigrant families into not listing any undocumented household members, which in a state like California, could depress the count enough to cost the state a congressional district.

But will that really happen?

If you’re worried about census information being used to round up non-citizens, why wouldn’t you just lie? Check the “citizen” box. And maybe fudge the ethnic origin question.

We now know it was the origin question on the 1940 census that helped the government round up Japanese-Americans during World War II.

When governments turn paranoid, stuff happens. Not that our current government is paranoid.

I’m just saying that while it’s a bad thing to lie, especially if it obstructs a government function, I think someone could understand why an immigrant family might do it: Why an immigrant household, seeing the current situation and determined to keep the family together, might in the heat of the moment check the “citizen” box for everybody, and maybe leave the Hispanic origin box un-checked.

Our undocumented immigrant problem might vanish overnight.

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