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Alabama is suing the Census Bureau for including illegal immigrants in population counts

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The state of Alabama is suing the Census Bureau over its counting of illegal immigrants in the census. The state is worried that states with high illegal immigrant populations will gain more legislative representation and electoral influence. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

The state of Alabama is worried that states with high illegal immigrant populations will gain more legislative representation and electoral influence. So, the state is suing the Census Bureau to change that, AL.com reported.

Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Alabama) and the state of Alabama are the plaintiffs in a lawsuit filed Monday in federal court that hopes to prohibit the counting of illegal immigrants in the census.

"Congressional seats should be apportioned based on the population of American citizens, not illegal aliens," read a Brooks news release. "After all, this is America, not the United Nations."

What's the issue?

The census determines the apportionment of seats in the House of Representatives and the number of Electoral College votes each state gets.

Alabama currently has seven House seats and nine Electoral College votes, but claims in the lawsuit that the state will lose one of each if the census includes illegal immigrants in population counts, saying the rule violates the 14th Amendment.

For reference:

"All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws."

"The Constitution does not permit the dilution of our legal residents' right to equal representation in this manner," Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall said in a news release.

According to the lawsuit, California, Texas and Florida each gained House seats because illegal immigrants count in the population, while Missouri, Louisiana and Ohio lost seats after the 2010 census.

Other census issues

Seventeen states have sued President Donald Trump's administration because it intends to include a question about citizenship on the 2020 census.

Opponents of the citizenship question believe it will harm participation, as noncitizens may be more hesitant to complete the questionnaire, while Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said the need for accurate data outweighs those concerns.

(H/T The Hill)

 

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