Richard Fernandez notes that the census is evidently back under the control of the Commerce Department, thanks largely to the efforts of Senator Kay Bailey Hutchinson of Texas. He makes some important observations:
I can only surmise that Marsha Blackburn’s call for a “House investigation” threatened to put one or more people in the White House under the spotlight. Perhaps the implicit message was: ‘do this and we shine a light in dark places’. That was the stick because some people didn’t like lights shined in corners….
What makes politics different from any other sport is that the players get to change the rules as part of the game they play. It is not the case that politicians work within a fixed framework. They are attempting to modify their environment all the time in order to gain advantage. Although they may swear an oath to defend the laws, the incentives are all on the side of subverting them. The Census provided an opportunity to engage in privilege escalation in which one political party would gain a permanent systematic advantage over the other. In politics, unlike football, you can try to tilt the playing field. [Emphasis added]
In short, politics is a game in which the laws and all who depend on their stability—that is, we—lose.