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Court Rejects Trump’s Order to Exclude Undocumented Immigrants from Census

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On Thursday, a federal court rejected President Trump’s order to exclude undocumented immigrants from the 2020 census.

What We Know:

  • The court, a three-judge panel in Federal District Court in Manhattan, voted unanimously that President Trump lacked the authority to remove noncitizens from census counts which will be used next year to reallocate seats in the House of Representatives. They ruled that it was illegal and therefore a lawsuit challenging the order did not need to go to a trial, saying that Trump’s proposal exceeded his authority under federal laws governing the census and reapportionment. They also said it violated the Constitution’s requirement to base apportionment of the House on “the whole number of persons in each state”.
  • The case involved lawsuits brought by two sets of plaintiffs, one a group of state and local governments and the United States Conference of Mayors, and the second a coalition of advocacy groups and other nongovernmental organizations. Both groups argued that Trump’s order would cause some of them to lose representation in the House as well as damage all of them by leading to a less accurate census.
  • Since the first census, taken in 1790, the number of seats each state holds in the House of Representatives has been based on counts of everyone living in the United States regardless of citizenship or legal status, except in the nation’s early year’s when those left out included slaves and “Indians not taxed”. Trump’s order attempted to scrap this practice. In a memorandum in July, Trump told the Commerce Department that the Census Bureau should produce two population count, one that was the traditional census produced every decade and another that estimated the number of unauthorized immigrants living in each state.
  • By subtracting immigrant populations from state totals, it would exclude millions of people and cause a drastic shift in House seats. In states with large immigrant populations, like California or Texas, it would largely reduce the number of House seats allotted to them and redistribute those seats to states with few unauthorized immigrants, like Alabama.
  • “This is a huge victory for voting rights and for immigrants’ rights,” Dale Ho, a lawyer with the American Civil Liberties Union representing the groups that brought one of the lawsuits, said in a statement. “President Trump has tried and failed yet again to weaponize the census against immigrant communities. The law is clear — every person counts in the census.”
  • The court ruled the president’s order excluding unauthorized immigrants violated the law “in two clear respects.” The court said federal law required “the production of a single set of state population totals,” making the two separate counts requested by Trump illegal. Additionally, the judges wrote, it “violates the statute governing reapportionment because, so long as they reside in the United States, illegal aliens qualify as ‘persons’ in a ‘state’ as Congress used those words.”

It is not currently unclear whether this ruling will affect a second case that is tied to Trump’s order: a battle over the administration’s demand last month that ordered the population count to be cut short so the original deadline could be met despite delays in the process due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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Coronavirus

28-year-old Houston Doctor Dies after Battle with Coronavirus

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28-year-old Houston Doctor Dies after Battle with Coronavirus

As the COVID-19 pandemic rages on, its deathly unforgiving grasp continues to take young bright minds from us. A 28-year-old Houston doctor from Syracuse has passed away after contracting a serious case of coronavirus and battling it for over two months, says the family.

What We Know:

  • According to Syracuse.com, Dr. Adeline Fagan was on her way towards completing her second year of residency as an Obstetrician-Gynecologist (OB-GYN) in Houston, and later became infected with coronavirus in July while doing a rotation treating other coronavirus patients in the emergency room.
  • Fagan moved to Houston to continue her career, while most of her family remained in Syracuse, New York. Soon after learning the news of their daughter falling ill, her parents had to travel from New York all the way down to Texas. This prompted the family to start a GoFundMe page in an effort to help cover all related medical and travel costs, which ended up raising around $160,000 by more than 3,000 donors.
  • Fagan’s family wrote, “That morning, she went into work feeling well and excited to see patients, but by the evening she began to feel under the weather.” They explained how what started out as the regular flu, quickly turned into a week’s stay at the hospital.
  • As time went on, her condition seemed to worsen every day. Eventually, medical professionals suggested they try an experimental drug on her and placed the patient in a life-support device called the extracorporeal membrane oxygenation machine (ECMO).

  • “Before we could see if this new drug was effective, her lungs could no longer support her,” her family wrote.
  • After those treatments were administered Fagan spent, what would be the remainder of her life, connected to a ventilator in an intensive care unit. That was when the family received news their daughter was doing slightly better and before the family was told over the weekend that she had suffered “massive brain bleeding”, which required surgery immediately. A doctor noted that this sort of event is not usual after a patient spends time in the ECMO.
  • The surgery was a last-ditch effort to save young Fagan’s life. The family was made aware she had a brutal 1 in a million chance of making it through the procedure. Even if she had survived, she would have unfortunately suffered long term and possibly lifelong effects such as several severe cognitive and sensory problems.

The family last recollection of Fagan was spending the “the remaining minutes hugging, comforting, and talking to Adeline, and then the world stopped”. As of September 22nd, 2020, over 2,600 people from the ages of 18-39 have died from COVID-19, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website.

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Trump’s Supreme Court List Narrowed and Decision To Be Made This Week

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Image via Reuters/Al Drago

President Donald Trump’s list of potential candidates to replace the late and great Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is being narrowed and his decision is to be made this week.

What We Know:

  • President Donald Trump received the news of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death after his campaign rally Friday. Following her death, Trump’s administration discussed with Trump about who would be the right candidate to replace RBG.
  • White House officials have been preparing to replace her prior to her death and Trump wanted to nominate a female justice to gain more female voters. Some of the candidates that the Trump administration has in mind are federal Judges Amy Coney Barrett and Barbara Lagoa, federal appeals court Judge Allison Jones Rushing, and Deputy Kate Todd. The concern with Rushing is her young age, 38, and Todd is not viewed as an actual finalist. Brett Kavanaugh was nominated by former White House counsel Don McGahn but Trump pushed for a female.
  • Barrett is the popular choice because Trump and other GOP senators are familiar with Barrett. Democrats question her position on abortion because of her Catholic faith, which may drive her views.
  • Trump expressed interest in Lagoa, a Cuban-American judge. He isn’t familiar with her and doesn’t know a lot about her but is planning to meet with her sometime in Miami. “She’s excellent,” he said. “She’s Hispanic. She’s a terrific woman from everything I know. I don’t know her. Florida. We love Florida.”
  • As for the decision, Trump ignored Ginsburg’s dying wish to be replaced after the 2020 Presidential election. His press secretary announced on Monday that Trump would announce his nominee before Ginsburg’s memorial services on Wednesday and Thursday but moments later, Trump said he would man the announcement on Friday or Saturday to “pay respects”.

After Ginsburg’s death, Trump was cautious to not mention anything about their differences in the past where she called him a “faker” back in 2016 and he said that she should resign.

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Florida Governor New Legislation Geared Towards Violent Protestors

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Ron-DeSantis
Image via CBSMiami/AP

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis announced new legislation to punish demonstrators who vandalize property and assault law enforcement.

What We Know:

  • Gov. Ron DeSantis made an announcement on Monday about new legislation that is expected to cease any violence during peaceful demonstrations. In the legislation, those who damage private property, harass or intimidate a person at a public accommodation, fund a disorderly protest, obstruct traffic during an unpermitted protest, or injure others will complete mandatory jail time. Those who strike law enforcement, which includes physically attacking or throwing an object, will face six months of jail time. As for obstructing traffic during an unpermitted protest, a driver will not be liable for causing harm or injuries while fleeing to safety from a violent mob.
  • “We’re not going to go down the road that other places have gone,” DeSantis said. “If you do it, and you know that a ton of bricks will rain down on you, then I think people will think twice about engaging in this type of conduct.”

  • DeSantis is being praised for his bill proposal and its support for police by conservatives. On the opposite end, Democrats believe these efforts are to help President Donald Trump with his re-election.
  • “The governor is attaching himself to Donald Trump’s propaganda and manufacturing a non-existenet law and order crisis in Florida,” Sendate Democratic Leader Audrey Gibson said. “It’s political fearmongering to bolster a president’s re-eletion bid.”
  • The legislation is also prohibiting state grants or aid to local governments who cut funding for law enforcement, terminating state benefits and making anyone involved in violent protests ineligible for work by state and local government, and denying bail for those involved in violent protests until their first court appearance.
  • Like the Democrats’ idea of this being an attempt at helping Trump’s re-election, some believe there are anterior motives behind this new legislation. “This is an attempt to chill legitimate dissent and somehow equate protests against police killing Black people with criminal activity despite the clear evidence that the protests occurring in Florida are overwhelmingly peaceful,” Tampa activist and co-found of Tampa for Justice Kelly Benjamin said.

The governor has not made any punishments for those who assault peaceful protesters.

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