National News, Tuesday, April 23rd – Citizenship Census Question Goes to Supreme Court

by Don Early and Aaron Martinez for Basin Life Magazine


The legal battle over what questions census takers can ask, is at the halls of the U.S. Supreme Court today, giving lasting implications that could dramatically affect political representation and federal funding over the next decade.

Today, the justices are weighing whether to allow the Trump administration to add a question about U.S. citizenship status.  They question they want to ask is:

 “Are you a citizen of the United States?”

Judges — in New York, California and Maryland — ruled that Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross’ decision to include the question violated procedures for adding new census questions under administrative law.  Judges in California and Maryland have also ruled that adding the question is unconstitutional because it hurts the government’s ability to carry out the constitutional mandate for a once-a-decade head count of every person living in the U.S.

Population counts from the 2020 census will determine how many congressional seats and Electoral College votes each state gets for the next decade. The data also guide the distribution of an estimated $880 billion a year in federal funding for schools, roads and other public services.  Stay tuned.

Whatever it takes to get attention and votes, Democratic presidential candidates are saying it and grabbing camera time.  Yesterday Senator Kamala Harris of California joined the ranks of 2020 candidates advocating for the impeachment of President Trump before they get the chance to try to somehow unseat him at the ballot box. 

Harris said she supports impeachment proceedings during a CNN town hall event on Monday. 

“I believe that we need to get rid of this president. That’s why I’m running to become president of the United States,” Harris said in response to an audience member who asked if she thought special counsel Robert Mueller’s report was damning enough to warrant Trump’s impeachment. 

But while she would be happy to defeat him at the ballot box, Harris said the evidence from the report “tells us that this president and his administration engaged in obstruction of justice.” 

“I believe Congress should take the steps towards impeachment.”

In Coos Bay, a sheriff’s K-9 named Odin, was punctured by hundreds of porcupine quills while pursuing a suspect in Oregon over the weekend.

The Coos County Sheriff’s Office deployed Odin in the Barview area on Saturday evening to track down a man wanted on several felony charges and who’d fled a deputy on foot.

While on the path, Odin encountered a porcupine and was pierced by more than 200 quills, according to the sheriff’s office.

The pursuit was immediately suspended and the dog was rushed to Hanson-Meekins Animal Hospital in Coos Bay, where he was sedated and treated for more than two hours, according to the sheriff’s office.

Photos released by the sheriff’s office show Odin with the white quills covering his mouth and front paws. Several of the quills went inside the dog’s mouth and near his left eye.

“The sheriff’s office would like to offer thanks to the staff at Hansen-Meekins for their dedication and professional care, as well as to the public for the outpouring of support for K-9 Odin,” the sheriff’s office said in a statement Monday.

The suspect, identified as 29-year-old Devin Wilson of Coos Bay, remained at large.

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