The State of California – along with several California cities and the Los Angeles Unified School District – challenged President Trump’s attempt to exclude undocumented immigrants from the state-population totals that are produced by the 2020 Census and used for apportioning seats in the U.S. House of Representatives and votes in the Electoral College. The plaintiffs argued that a July 21, 2020 White House memorandum directing the Commerce Secretary to report data on undocumented immigrants to President Trump violated the U.S. Constitution, the federal Census Act, and other federal law.
On December 28, 2020, the U.S. Supreme Court vacated the district court’s decision and remanded the case to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. On January 7, 2021, the district court dismissed the case for lack of jurisdiction.
The State of California, three California cities, and the Los Angeles Unified School District sued President Donald Trump, Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross, the Department of Commerce, the Census Bureau, and Census Bureau Director Steven Dillingham, arguing that the exclusion of undocumented immigrants from the 2020 Census state-population totals used for apportioning congressional seats and Electoral College votes is unconstitutional and otherwise illegal.
The plaintiffs contended that the President’s July 21, 2020 memorandum on excluding undocumented immigrants from the state-population totals used to calculate the state apportionments violated constitutional and statutory requirements that the President include all persons in the congressional apportionment base, irrespective of citizenship or immigration status. The suit further argued that the memorandum violates separation-of-powers principles and that the President’s decision to exclude undocumented immigrants from the apportionment base without reliable data to do so was “arbitrary and capricious” under the Administrative Procedure Act.
The plaintiffs asked the court to declare that the exclusion of undocumented immigrants from congressional apportionment violates the Constitution and federal law. The plaintiffs also asked the court to bar the Commerce Department and the Census Bureau from transmitting any data regarding citizenship or immigration status to the President for apportionment purposes and to order the President to include all residents of the states, including undocumented immigrants, when he calculates the apportionments.
On August 14, the court consolidated this case with San Jose v. Trump.
On October 22, the district court granted the plaintiffs’ motion for partial summary judgment and enjoined the federal government from implementing the memorandum.
The federal government appealed that decision to the Supreme Court.
On December 28, 2020, the U.S. Supreme Court vacated the district court’s decision and remanded the case to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California in light of its December 18, 2020 opinion ruling that the case was not “ripe for review” in Trump v. New York.
On January 7, 2021, the district court dismissed the case for lack of jurisdiction.
- Complaint (July 28, 2020)
- Order Relating Cases (August 21, 2020)
- First Amended Complaint (August 24, 2020)
- Plaintiffs’ Motion for Partial Summary Judgment (August 28, 2020)
- Amicus Brief of the House of Representatives in Support of Plaintiffs (August 31, 2020)
- Defendants’ Motion to Dismiss (September 10, 2020)
- Plaintiffs’ Reply in Support of Motion for Partial Summary Judgment and in Opposition to Defendants’ Motion to Dismiss (September 21, 2020)
- Defendants’ Reply in Support of Motion to Dismiss (September 28, 2020)
- Order Granting Plaintiffs’ Motion for Partial Summary Judgment and Denying Defendants’ Motion to Dismiss (October 22, 2020)
- Order Dismissing Cases for Lack of Jurisdiction (January 7, 2021)
U.S. Supreme Court (Case No. 20–561)