By David Montanaro
Published June 27, 2019
Fox News senior judicial analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano said Thursday that President Trump and his administration suffered a "significant defeat" with the Supreme Court blocking a citizenship question from appearing on the 2020 census.
The court said the administration's explanation for adding such a question is insufficient, and sent it back to the lower courts for further consideration. The ruling marks a setback for the administration, but the issue is not yet resolved.
However, Napolitano said that the decision to move the case back to two lower courts effectively ends the issue for the 2020 census, since the printing of the census documents begins July 1.
"This question is off, who knows if it will ever come back," Napolitano said.
"Just skimming through this, this is a significant defeat for the Trump administration and for the president personally, who of course wanted this question on there, and I think had understandable reasons for wanting it on there," said Napolitano.
The ruling said that the court was presented "with an explanation for agency action that is incongruent with what the record reveals about the agency’s priorities and decision-making process."
This case was one of the most closely watched cases of the Court’s term, Department of Commerce v. New York, and explored exactly what led to Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross deciding to include the question in the first place.
At issue was whether Ross acted within his authority when he added the question. More specifically, there were questions as to whether he violated the Administrative Procedure Act, which sets standards for how federal agencies make changes, or the Enumeration Clause of the Constitution, which says that congressional representatives are apportioned to states based on their populations’ “numbers” and “persons.”