In an Order this evening, the Supreme Court issued a temporary stay of any deposition of Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross in the case challenging the constitutionality of adding a question about citizenship status to the 2020 U.S. census questionnaire. Judge Furman had ordered the deposition to go forward (see our coverage here). The stay is in effect until Monday, but, if there is a mandamus or certiorari petition filed before then, will continue until the petition is resolved.

Justice Gorsuch, joined by Justice Thomas, issued a short concurrence and dissent from the Order, calling the matter to be explored at the deposition — Secretary Ross’s alleged bad faith motives in adding the citizenship question — “highly unusual, to say the least.” They added: “Leveling an extraordinary claim of bad faith against a coordinate branch of government requires an extraordinary justification.” Accordingly, they would have stayed the entire case.