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The Supreme Court has agreed to hear an appeal from the Trump administration in its efforts to add a controversial citizenship citizenship question to the 2020 census.

Why it matters: Critics of the citizenship question argue it could lead to an inaccurate census count, as legal and undocumented immigrants might refuse to participate. Demographers believe an undercount could reduce the political power of heavily Democratic states with large immigrant communities during redistricting in 2021.

  • The other side: The administration argues it would help it enforce the Voting Rights Act. However, John Gore, the acting head of the Justice Department's civil rights division, said last year the question is "not necessary" to enforce the VRA.

The backdrop:

  • Steve Bannon and other administration officials started pushing for the addition months after President Trump took office, according to internal documents. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, who oversees the Census Bureau, said the DOJ recommended adding the question.
  • 18 states, several cities and immigrant groups notched a win over the administration last month when a federal judge in New York ruled against the Trump administration and said Ross “violated the law.” However, the judge did not find evidence the question was unconstitutional or motivated by any intent to discriminate.
  • The question hasn't been asked on the standard census form since 1950.

Go deeper: The full implications of the citizenship question

Go deeper

Schumer's m(aj)ority checklist

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer. Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Capitalizing on the Georgia runoffs, achieving a 50-50 Senate and launching an impeachment trial are weighty to-dos for getting Joe Biden's administration up and running on Day One.

What to watch: A blend of ceremonies, hearings and legal timelines will come into play on Tuesday and Wednesday so Chuck Schumer can actually claim the Senate majority and propel the new president's agenda.

The dark new reality in Congress

National Guard troops keep watch at security fencing. Photo: Kent Nishimura/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

This is how bad things are for elected officials and others working in a post-insurrection Congress:

  • Rep. Norma Torres (D-Calif.) said she had a panic attack while grocery shopping back home.
  • Rep. Jim McGovern (D-Mass.) said police may also have to be at his constituent meetings.
  • Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.) told a podcaster he brought a gun to his office on Capitol Hill on Jan. 6 because he anticipated trouble with the proceedings that day.
Off the Rails

Episode 3: Descent into madness ... Trump: "Sometimes you need a little crazy"

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photos: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Beginning on election night 2020 and continuing through his final days in office, Donald Trump unraveled and dragged America with him, to the point that his followers sacked the U.S. Capitol with two weeks left in his term. This Axios series takes you inside the collapse of a president.

Episode 3: The conspiracy goes too far. Trump's outside lawyers plot to seize voting machines and spin theories about communists, spies and computer software.

President Trump was sitting in the Oval Office one day in late November when a call came in from lawyer Sidney Powell. "Ugh, Sidney," he told the staff in the room before he picked up. "She's getting a little crazy, isn't she? She's really gotta tone it down. No one believes this stuff. It's just too much."