LOS ANGELES – The Trump administration this week told a federal judge in Maryland that it would continue fighting to add a citizenship question to the 2020 Census relying on a new set of government attorneys. The decision follows a ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court last month preventing the immediate addition of the question.

Recently, Donald J. Trump’s campaign issued emails once again targeting the Latino community and defending the unconstitutional addition to the Census.

Please attribute the following statement on the emails and the substitution of government attorneys to Thomas A. Saenz, president and general counsel of MALDEF (Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund):

“Three days ago, the Trump 2020 campaign sent an email doubling down on the racist launch of Donald Trump’s previous presidential campaign in June 2015.  The campaign’s email reiterated that ‘Mexico isn’t sending their best’ and strongly implied that all Latino immigrants are ‘dangerous criminals’.  The mailer then posed what it characterized as an ‘Official American Citizens vs Illegal Aliens Survey.’  It is clear that Donald Trump thinks he can once again get to the White House by targeting the entire Latino community and by demonizing all immigrants.

“Today, the Trump campaign sent an email that explicitly adds the Census citizenship question issue to this racist and nativist campaign agenda.  The email is built entirely around the issue, without any rationale for why the question is needed, simply a naked appeal that attempts to pit citizens against non-citizens.

“This set of emails epitomizes the Trump administration’s now complete politicization of the decennial Census, a constitutional obligation that under previous administrations of both parties has been largely excluded from such naked and overt political misuse.

“The emails also demonstrate the partisan political motivation behind Donald Trump’s reversal last week on whether to comply with a U.S. Supreme Court decision or to prolong a now maudlin court battle to salvage an unnecessary Census question, late added through the completely perjured explanations of Wilbur Ross.

“In short, this Census legal battle has become farcical on the part of the Trump administration.  Of course, this epic farce will cost federal taxpayers precious resources that could be put to far better use in any number of real federal policy endeavors.

“The latest development in this absurd Trump administration soap opera was yesterday afternoon’s substitution of a whole new set of federal attorneys to pursue Trump’s fever dream of showing up the Chief Justice of the United States.  In keeping with the absurdity of this legal strategy from the Trump administration, I offer the following candid advice:

“Changing attorneys makes no difference if your whole legal strategy is utterly debased.

“Unfortunately, what is being debased here is the Constitution of the United States, including the separation of powers that ensures that the Congress and the courts prevent the executive from becoming a dictator.  This is a debasement that should concern all of us who are devoted to the great experiment that is the United States of America.”

Read a timeline of the Census litigation HERE