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Voting & Elections 10.22.2019

Boston Globe: For census, R.I. is hardest state to count in New England

John M. Marion, executive director of Common Cause Rhode Island, emphasized that, “The Constitution is crystal clear that the census is to count every resident of the United States, regardless of their citizenship status. Any attempt to discourage participation by non-citizens is an affront to that constitutional purpose.” “For Rhode Islanders, millions of dollars of federal money and political representation for their communities hang in the balance,” Marion said. “It is imperative we make sure every Rhode Islander participates in the census.”

Associated Press: Republicans begin complying with NC redistricting order

“If the justices in Washington, D.C., won’t protect people’s constitutional rights — won’t ensure that all voters have a fair opportunity to participate in our democracy — then the courts of North Carolina will fix the problem themselves,” said Stanton Jones, a chief lawyer in the lawsuit filed by Common Cause, the state Democratic Party and Democratic voters.

New York Times: The Battle Over the Files of a Gerrymandering Mastermind

“We’ve already seen that these files have been instrumental in exposing lies around the effort to add a citizenship question to the census and around subverting a court’s order to redraw gerrymandered lines,” Kathay Feng, the national redistricting director for the group, said in an interview. “The Hofeller files are important because they’re the only thing that will allow the American people to know the truth behind the efforts to rig redistricting and elections,” she added. “They have to be made public.”

Associated Press: Files from dead mapmaker focus of NC redistricting hearing

Common Cause's lawyers told a three-judge panel they want to use only 35 of those documents in the trial, scheduled to begin July 15. They say the files will bolster their arguments that Republican legislators drew state legislative districts in August 2017 with excessive partisan intent, in violation of the state constitution.

CNBC: Supreme Court effectively blocks census citizenship question for now in a blow to Trump administration

After Hofeller’s death in August, his estranged daughter discovered hard drives in her father’s home and turned them over to Common Cause. “The Supreme Court saw through the explanations by the Commerce Department as pure pretext. The last-minute effort to add the question was clearly a cover-up to mask their true motives — to rig redistricting for partisan and racial gain,” Kathay Feng, Common Cause’s director of redistricting and representation, said in a statement after the opinion was released.

Philadelphia Inquirer: Pa. budget deal doesn’t include 2020 Census funding that state commission recommended

“We just can’t go into this with no funding," said Micah Sims, a member of Pennsylvania’s 2020 Census Complete Count Commission and executive director of the good-government group Common Cause Pennsylvania. "That would be a terrible situation. We have to avoid an undercount.”

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