U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) released a statement on the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision Thursday to send the census citizenship question matter back to a lower court “to consider new evidence that strongly suggests the question was added to deter participation from communities of color.”

Schatz said via press release, “There is damning evidence that this is a partisan effort to force an undercount of communities of color. The lower courts need to call this what it is: unlawful and unconstitutional.”

Schatz, according to his office, was part of a bicameral group of over 30 current and former members of Congress who signed on to an amicus brief to the court supporting a lawsuit to stop the question from being added.

Supreme Court Building Washington DC1. 6 june 2016
The U.S. Supreme Court building. Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Meanwhile, U.S. Sens. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) and Cory Booker (D-N.J) issued a joint statement after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled against the Trump administration.

“Today’s Supreme Court ruling on the 2020 Census citizenship question is a temporary reprieve for immigrant and minority communities targeted by the Trump Administration to deliberately suppress their participation,” they said in a press release. “In its decision, the nation’s highest court recognized the Trump administration has lied to the American people about its true political motivations for including a citizenship question, calling the Administration’s justification for the question ‘contrived.'”

The three senators warned, however, “this is not the end of our fight against the Trump administration’s deceptive tactics to stoke fear in immigrants and communities of color. To ensure that our communities are accurately counted and that the Census remains a fair and non-partisan exercise, Congress must now act and pass our Every Person Counts Act.”

Earlier this year Hirono, Menendez and Booker introduced the legislation that would prohibit the Secretary of Commerce from including any question regarding one’s citizenship or immigration status on the U.S. Census, according to Hirono’s office.

The Trump administration responded to the ruling by vowing to delay the Census.

“I have asked the lawyers if they can delay the Census, no matter how long, until the … United States Supreme Court is given additional information from which it can make a final and decisive decision on this very critical matter,” Trump said, according to a Fox News report.

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