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1890 Census Retained in Immigration Bill Now Before Congress


Barring unexpected events, the Johnson Bill for a two percent quota on the basis of the 1890 census, in its latest form, number 7995, will, probably, come up for consideration and vote on Tuesday of next week, when it will be reached on the calendar in due course.

The House Immigration Committee filed yesterday a new and revised report on this bill which was originally introduced by Johnson a few days ago. The new report contains changes aimed to meet Secretary Hughes’ objections that the 1890 census basis violates some of our treaty obligations. The references of a previous report denying a discriminatory purpose against Jews are retained in the new report which quotes Israel Zangwill’s statement that the Jews are in no sense opposed to the Nordic. The report continues. “The Committee does not feel that the restriction aimed to be accomplished in this bill is directed at the Jews, for they can come in the quotas from any country.”

A new paragraph has been added denying that the Committee has assaulted the religions of various peoples. This has apparently a reference to Italian Catholics. It states: “Mindful of the Constitution of the United States, the question of religion has not entered into the arguments that have led to the construction of this bill.”

The new report also lays special emphasis on the exemption of close relatives allowed by the bill. This exemption, the report states, is more advantageous to the new immigration than the old of eighteen ninety, and in this way demonstrates that the charge of discrimination against the new immigration is unfounded. A new table of population and immigration statistics are added to the report.

A significant fact about this new report is that Representative Bacon of New York, who, in the present report, filed an individual minority objection to the 1890 census basis, representing the New York bloc, this time signed with the majority. This change of mind may indicate that the New York opposition bloc has been broken up. Congressman Sabath and Dickstein are preparing their minority report and expect to file it within two or three days.

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