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La Union Del Pueblo Entero (LUPE) v. Trump

Latino groups filed a lawsuit against Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross challenging his directive to the Census Bureau to collect and produce citizenship data for state-level redistricting purposes. The plaintiffs argue that Secretary Ross’s directive violates the U.S. Constitution, the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), and federal law barring conspiracies to violate civil rights.

Last Updated: April 20, 2021
Published: September 16, 2019

Note: The Brennan Center is not a participant in this case.


Latino community groups and residents of Texas sued Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, the Department of Commerce, Census Director Steven Dillingham, and the Census Bureau for the Commerce Department’s directive to the Bureau to comply with President Trump’s Executive Order 13880 and provide states with Citizenship Voting Age Population (“CVAP”) data for redistricting purposes.

The plaintiffs alleged that the Executive Order and Commerce Department’s directive were “motivated by a racially discriminatory scheme to reduce Latino political representation” and therefore violated the Fifth Amendment’s Equal Protection Clause. The plaintiffs also contended that the Commerce Department’s directive, among other things, failed to comply with federal regulations and did not provide an “adequate rationale” for collecting and producing CVAP data in connection with 2020 decennial census. Finally, the plaintiffs contended that Secretary Ross and the Director of the Census Bureau conspired with others—including members of the Trump Administration—to violate the constitutional rights of Latinos and non-citizens.  

The plaintiffs asked the court to declare that the production of citizenship data for state redistricting purposes violates the Constitution and the APA. The plaintiffs also asked the court to bar the Commerce Department and the Census Bureau from including the citizenship data with the P.L. 94–171 Redistricting File, a population count that states use for redistricting.

On December 18, 2019, the government asked the court to dismiss the case.

On July 22, 2020, the court denied the government’s motion to dismiss the amended complaint. On August 13, 2020, the plaintiffs filed a second amended complaint. 

On April 2, 2020, the court granted the plaintiffs’ notice of voluntary dismissal. 

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