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Thursday, December 17, 2020

Trump v. New York--The Four Corners Offense

The Supreme Court did nothing with Trump v. New York (the census/apportionment case) before leaving for a month-long recess. This means that the case may never be decided, though that conclusion is not without complications.

Prior to January 20th, the President is supposed to receive the population tallies from the census and issue a report to Congress outlining the next reapportionment. One problem is that the pandemic is delaying the census work. Another issue is that the President's request to the Secretary of Commerce for data on illegal residents is creating a further delay. Thus, it is unclear whether the census data will be ready by January 20th. 

Even if the census data is ready before then, though, can President Trump issue the report if Trump v. New York is still sub judice? If he does, does that mean that the report is not final and can be changed by President Biden? The Justices might be stalling in the hope that they do not need to decide anything and can declare the dispute moot. Does the stalling, though, itself end up creating the mootness?

UPDATE: Today the Supreme Court dismissed the case for want of jurisdiction. We'll see if this comes back next year.

Posted by Gerard Magliocca on December 17, 2020 at 11:08 AM | Permalink


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