Supreme Court allows census citizenship question trial to proceed

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross announced the decision to include the question earlier this year, but the challenges have raised questions about Ross’s motives, the Justice Department’s role in that decision, and other influence — including from the White House and outside figures — in the move.

The addition of the question, which has not been included in the census since 1950, has been opposed not only by immigrant groups and Democrats but also by former directors of the census under presidents of both parties and the agency’s own scientists.

The Supreme Court earlier halted a deposition of Ross that Furman had ordered, but it allowed other discovery in the case — including the deposition of the acting head of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, John Gore — to proceed. The stay of the Ross deposition was temporary, pending the Justice Department asking the court to hear a case resolving the question of whether the deposition was appropriate.