While the surge of migrants at the border and sanctuary cities get the bulk of media attention, there are less-reported immigration issues that have major implications for the country. A district court in Alabama recently denied a motion to dismiss a lawsuit brought by the State of Alabama and Representative Mo Brooks (R-AL) against the federal government that challenges the current practice of counting illegal aliens in the decennial census.
In their lawsuit, Representative Brooks and Alabama claim that they will suffer direct harm if illegal aliens are counted in the population totals for the 2020 census. More specifically, they claim that counting the illegal alien population would cause Alabama to lose a House of Representative seat in Congress, Electoral College votes, and federal and private funding.
How so? When illegal aliens enter the United States, many flee to sanctuary cities and states, where they can take advantage of generous welfare benefits as well as taxpayer-funded education and healthcare. Out of the estimated 11 million (some recent studies show that the number is closer to 22 million) illegal aliens living in the United States, approximately 73 percent live in only 10 states, over 61 percent in just six states, and half in just three states. Since the constitution of House seats and Electoral College votes fluctuate based on population totals (determined every ten years by the Census), states with significantly lower levels of illegal aliens such as Alabama may suffer due to the dramatic change that the country has faced over the past decade—putting their allotted representation in Congress at risk. Federal funding and grants are also dependent on population size.
The organization for which I work, the Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI), filed a brief in the case on behalf of Rep. Brooks and Alabama. IRLI’s amicus brief focused on the “standing” issue. Before a federal court can hear a case, it must find that the plaintiffs have what is called standing to sue (which is a requirement under Article III of the U.S. Constitution). To prove standing, plaintiffs must show that, 1) they have or will suffer an injury, 2) the defendant is to blame for that injury, and 3) the court can fashion a remedy to cure the injury. IRLI argued that the plaintiffs in this case met all of the requirements, and the court agreed.
This case exposes the underlying preemptive agenda behind left-leaning sanctuary jurisdictions and their continuous denial of the crisis posed by unchecked mass migration. Their advocacy against borders and for defiance of federal immigration law has little to do with their humanitarian façade. It is a vile scheme to advance their own political agenda with disregard to the Constitution and the founding principles of representative democracy.
With a record number of border crossings and asylum requests currently at the southern border, the potential for vote dilution is only growing. Simply put, the people of Alabama stand to lose representation, both with the number of representatives in Congress and a smaller number of Electoral College voters in national elections. This is a direct result of the relentless influx of illegal aliens and the decision to count them in our calculus for representation. While much attention has been paid to the potential for manipulation of our elections by foreign entities, illegal immigration presents a direct threat to our electoral integrity from foreign nationals that some want to ignore.
There is little doubt that in the two-year time span that separates the 2018 election and the upcoming 2020 election, the illegal alien population will significantly increase across the country. While there is an ongoing and immediate threat of voter fraud at the polls, voter dilution and Electoral College changes via the census represent a long-term danger to election integrity and ensuring the voting franchise of American citizens.
One of the drivers of migrants to America is their disgust with pervasive corruption in their home countries. To open our census and electoral processes to the influence of noncitizens is to go down the road of the very same corruption. The time is now to stop it.
Jill Greenwald is a communications associate at the Immigration Reform Law Institute, a public interest law firm working to defend the rights and interests of the American people from the negative effects of illegal migration.
Also published at: Jill Greenwald, Gaming the Census Will Make America Like the Countries Migrants Flee, American Thinker, June 26, 2019.