Note: The Brennan Center is not a participant in this case.
The Center for Popular Democracy Action and the City of Newburgh, New York sued the Census Bureau, contending that the Bureau’s preparations for the 2020 Census were deficient and would lead to a dramatic undercount of communities of color in violation of the government’s constitutional duty to conduct a full national head count. On March 18, 2020, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York dismissed the case.
The Center for Popular Democracy Action (CPD Action) and the City of Newburgh, NY sued the Census Bureau, Bureau Director Steven Dillingham, the U.S. Department of Commerce, and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross. The suit alleged that the Bureau’s Final Operational Plan for the 2020 Census “drastically and arbitrarily reduces the necessary resources for key activities.” The plaintiffs alleged that the Census Bureau had arbitrarily chosen to understaff field operations, reduce the number of field offices, and insufficiently staff the Bureau’s communications and partnership program, including by eliminating local Questionnaire Assistance Centers. The plaintiffs contended that these changes to the census program violate the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) and would produce a severe undercount of communities of color, in violation of the Enumeration Clause of the Constitution.
The plaintiffs asked the court for injunctive and other appropriate relief requiring the Census Bureau to develop a plan to ensure that hard-to-count populations would be enumerated in the 2020 Census
On March 18, 2020, the district court dismissed the case in its entirety.
- Complaint (November 26, 2019)
- Defendants' Opposition to Plaintiffs' Motion to Compel Expedited Production of the Administrative Record (December 20, 2019)
- Letter re: Request for Rule 16(b) Pre-trial Conference (December 23, 2019)
- Plaintiffs' Reply in Further Support of Motion to Compel Expedited Production of the Administrative Record (December 27, 2019)
- Order Granting Motion to Expedite (January 9, 2020)
- Defendants' Motion to Dismiss (January 31, 2020)
- Plaintiffs' Motion for Preliminary Injunction (January 31, 2020)
- Plaintiffs' Memorandum of Law in Opposition to Defendants' Motion to Dismiss (February 21, 2020)
- Defendants' Memorandum of Law in Opposition to Plaintiffs' Preliminary Injunction (February 21, 2020)
- Reply Memorandum in Further Support of Defendants' Motion to Dismiss (March 4, 2020)
- Reply Memorandum in Further of Support of Plaintiffs' Motion for Preliminary Injunction (March 4, 2020)
- Defendants' Sur-Reply in Further Opposition to Plaintiffs' Preliminary Injunction and in Support of Defendants' Partial Motion to Dismiss (March 12, 2020)
- Order (March 18, 2020)