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Not So Fast


When Donald Trump wants to do a racism and/or an illegality, he will exhaust all alternatives:

The Justice Department told a federal judge on Wednesday that it had been “instructed” to try to find a way to get the citizenship question back on the 2020 census, after the Supreme Court blocked its previous effort to do so last month.

The update came after President Trump tweeted Wednesday that previous government statements that the administration was backing down from its census citizenship fight were incorrect. U.S. District Judge George Hazel convened a teleconference hearing on Wednesday as confusion swirled around the issue. Both the Justice Department and the Commerce Department had said on Tuesday that the forms had been sent off to printers without the question on it.

Jody Hunt, a top DOJ official, told the judge that the administration believed there may be a “legally available” path to getting the question re-added while still complying with the Supreme Court’s ruling, according to a transcript of the hearing obtained by TPM.

As Hasen says, the DOJ wasn’t eager to pursue this for a reason. But also anyone who claims to be certain about this will play out is full of shit. The author of the monument to unwarranted deference and bad faith that is Korematsu II could have easily shut this down by just joining Breyer and creating a majority holding that the addition of the question violated the APA. Could have, but didn’t. It’s not over until it’s actually over.

…this is surreal.

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