- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 11, 2019

Sen. John Barrasso said Thursday that he supports the census citizenship question amid reports President Trump may announce an executive action for the question to appear on the decennial survey after it was blocked by the Supreme Court.

“I think the more information that we can have makes us better able to make decisions in Congress, especially when Democrats in the debates are saying we want to provide free health insurance for all illegal immigrants. I think as you make policy decisions, we need to know how many people you are talking about, where they are and what they’re doing,” the Wyoming Republican said on CNN’s “Newsroom.”

Mr. Barrasso is referencing a moment on night two of the 2020 Democratic presidential debates where all 10 candidates, including Vice President Joseph R. Biden and Sens. Bernard Sanders of Vermont and Kamala D. Harris of California, all raised their hands to support health insurance for illegal immigrants.

CNN’s Poppy Harlow mentioned reports that executive lawyers will be using the Democrats’ support for that policy as an argument for the question’s inclusion.

She also said Mr. Barrasso was “so vocal” during the Obama administration against the use of executive action, “but now you’re comfortable with the president, despite the Supreme Court saying, ‘Look, your legal argument is not good enough. Come up with something else.’ Why are you comfortable now?”

“Additional legal arguments are going to be made, but if you’re asking me if it is important to have this in the census, I believe it is, I have from the beginning, and I continue to support including in the way the president wants it to be done,” he said.

“I’m comfortable with what the president is doing, I think we are going to pursue the legal arguments along those lines, and we’ll wait to see what the president has to say this afternoon,” he added.


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