Speaker Heastie Statement on the Southern District of New York's Ruling Against Trump Administration's Census Citizenship Question

The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York's ruling to halt the inclusion of a citizenship question in the 2020 census is a victory for New York and for everyone who calls it home.

Under the guise of enforcing the Voting Rights Act, the Trump administration insisted that the question is necessary to protect eligible voters. But we see it for what it is - a blatant attempt to weaponize the census against immigrants, communities of color and sanctuary cities and states. The question is designed to intimidate immigrants into not responding to the census, leaving their communities undercounted, underrepresented and underfunded.

Time and again, the Trump administration has used illegal tactics to mislead, disenfranchise and intimidate minorities. And while they are sure to appeal the Court's decision, we believe that today's ruling is indicative of a larger victory - that our democratic institutions will not be manipulated to instill fear or to divide us.