Trump’s Unconstitutional Attempt to Erase Immigrants In Census Data Hurts New Mexicans’ Future

"...When New Mexican communities are missing from the census, resources and political power for our communities get assigned to somewhere else — somewhere that already has more money, more privilege, and more power." - CCNM's Sydney Tellez.

New Mexico– Today, President Trump signed an executive order in an attempt to ban immigrants from being counted in the 2020 Census by limiting non-Citizens from being included in population numbers for redistricting purposes. This order comes a year after the Supreme Court ruled against the Trump administration’s attempt to add an unconstitutional citizenship question to the Census.

The following are reaction from community groups and leaders across New Mexico deeply involved in the accurate count of all New Mexicans in the 2020 Census:

“Trump’s latest action is a page of the same tired racist playbook the administration has been using as part of their white supremacist attacks against immigrant communities nationwide. This executive order has the potential of hurting the future of every New Mexican community, especially at a time when our families and children are depending on an accurate census count to receive every federal dollar possible to overcome the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. This executive order is clearly nothing more than an unconstitutional political ploy to try to intimidate and erase undocumented and immigrant communities.”  – Oriana Sandoval, CEO for the Center for Civic Policy

“Since day one, the Trump administration has launched consistent attacks towards immigrant communities. Today’s executive order is just another attempt to erase our community, however immigrant communities are ready to fight back and get counted. We know that if we let xenophobic attacks keep us from getting counted, then our future generations will lack vital resources to move forward the safety and wellneing of our immigrant communities. We will not allow fear mongering to result in our communities and our children not receiving every dollar of funding they deserve.” – Felipe Rodriguez, Campaign Manager for the NM Dream Team

“The President’s newest attack against our immigrant families is yet just another political gimmick to distract us from the complete failure of his administration to protect the American people from this pandemic. Trump knows the power of the Census and will do or say anything to try to get our communities from being counted. We will continue to work hard to ensure as many New Mexicans of all backgrounds make themselves counted this 2020 and demand the resources that our communities deserve.” – Johana Bencomo, Executive Director for NM CAFé

“This executive order is one more example of an unconstitutional abuse of Trump’s power and is aimed at distracting the country from the failures of his administration. He is yet again trying to instill fear and suppress the voices of immigrant communities while threatening the well-being of our entire community. An undercount of just 1% in New Mexico could result in a loss of more than $780 million over the next decade. Immigrant families and workers are essential to our state, as is being demonstrated by frontline workers during this pandemic. We will continue to work diligently to ensure that every New Mexican is counted.” – Rosalinda Dorado, Community Organizer with El CENTRO de Igualdad y Derechos

“This memorandum by President Trump is a blatant attempt to skew how electoral districts are drawn, instill fear and chaos in immigrant communities, and send a message to his white supremacist base.  Using citizen-only data to draw districts, as this memo demands, will exclude millions of people of color, violates the Constitution, and undermines the principles of equal representation that our country strives towards. When New Mexican communities are missing from the census, resources and political power for our communities get assigned to somewhere else — somewhere that already has more money, more privilege, and more power.” – Sydney Tellez, Associate Director for Common Cause New Mexico

“This executive order is another desperate Trump maneuver meant to stoke fear and disorder in our country. Our families successfully fought back when the administration tried to undercount us with the citizenship question, and we will prevail again. New Mexicans know what is at stake, and we know how essential ALL workers and families are to local communities, the economy, and a healthy democracy. When Trump is gone, we will still be here, counted and strong.” – Marcela Díaz, Executive Director of Somos Un Pueblo Unido, a statewide immigrant rights organization

“This executive order is yet another opportunistic attempt by the Trump Administration to demonize and ostracize immigrant communities and communities of color. It is obvious that this act is unconstitutional and that the President does not have the ability to unilaterally decide who counts as a person for apportionment purposes. Such an act at this late stage of the Census count is merely meant to create fear and confusion so that undocumented immigrants, including those in mixed-status families, do not participate in the Census. The inclusion of all people in the Census, regardless of immigration status, is integral to ensuring that all of our communities have a voice in the political process.”  – Melissa Guiterrez, Census Outreach Coordinator for the New Mexico Immigrant Law Center

“Trump’s recent executive order seeks to appease white supremacy by hoarding federal dollars for the elite. A deceptive tactic against the most vulnerable in our communities; especially during a pandemic! It is a disgrace to the values Indigenous People and New Mexicans emulate. Immigrant families are worthy of community care and humanity.” – Nicole Martin, Co-Founder and Sex Education Developer, Indigenous Women Rising 

“Another unconstitutional act by the Trump Administration to try to erase our beloved neighbors. To every person living in New Mexico, this is your call to action to complete the Census today. Our state, communities and families rely on an accurate count to receive the resources you deserve. We see you, you are cherished and you count!” – Dawn Z. Hommer, CEO for the Community Action Agency of Southern New Mexico

“In New Mexico, everyone counts, everyone matters. An undercount will hurt New Mexico’s recovery efforts and communities for the next decade. We are not an immigrant New Mexico, and a non-immigrant New Mexico.  We are ONE New Mexico, and we must do all we can to count everyone in the state.” – Tsiporah Nephesh, Executive Director, New Mexico Thrives