Symposium: Facts, not fears, should control outcome of census citizenship question case

Mithun Mansinghani serves as solicitor general for the state of Oklahoma, which filed an amicus brief joined by 16 other states in support of the petitioners in Department of Commerce v. New York. Pundits, politicians and the media have warned the public for years about the dangers of fear-based politics. In one heavily publicized moment in 2010, comedian-commentators Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert went so far as to hold a half-satirical rally calling for a restoration of sanity in government and an end to a culture of fear in politics. Nearly a decade later, it’s clear that the use of fear as a partisan tool is here to stay. The latest attempt to leverage trepidation for political purposes — the challenge to reinserting a question about citizenship in the 2020 census — has made its way to the U.S. Supreme Court. But if the court focuses on the facts of the case, rather than the fear-based myths that have arisen around the citizenship question, upholding the…

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