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Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms and other members of The U.S. Conference of Mayors (USCM) have spoken out against President Donald Trump’s attempt to exclude undocumented immigrants from the Census.
“Despite this exclusionary tactic by the Trump Administration, Atlanta joins with other cities around the country in ensuring that everyone is counted in the 2020 Census, including undocumented immigrants,” Bottoms, who serves as Chair on USCM’s Census Task Force said in a statement.
Trump signed a presidential memorandum on Tuesday that would exclude undocumented immigrants from being counted in congressional districts when district lines are redrawn next year.
“I have accordingly determined that respect for the law and protection of the integrity of the democratic process warrant the exclusion of illegal aliens from the apportionment base, to the extent feasible and to the maximum extent of the President’s discretion under the law,” the order states.
Trump has continued to push his anti-immigration agenda, further isolating both legal and illegal residents in the country, creating a chasm of division throughout the country.
Louisville’s Mayor Greg Fischer, the USCM President, condemned the order.
“The U.S. Constitution is clear: a census shall be taken of the ‘whole number’ of persons in the nation. That means everyone: citizens and non-citizens, including those who are undocumented. The memo the President recently issued suggests otherwise and is misguided.
“Undocumented people are important members of our communities. They work; they pay taxes; they provide essential services; and despite financing obstacles, frequently start their own businesses contributing over $15 billion to our economies and to our nation as a whole. The President’s memo is a cynical tactic that stands to undermine not only the success of the Census, but the very fabric of our country. The nation’s mayors will continue to work to ensure that everyone in our communities can come forward without fear and be counted.”
Trump’s move will be challenged in court.
Dale Ho, the director of the American Civil Liberties Union, said in a statement.
“(Trump’s) latest attempt to weaponize the Census for an attack on immigrant communities will be found unconstitutional. We’ll see him in court, and win, again,” Ho said.