Washington sources said officials would obtain the information through an executive order for government agencies, as court challenges would have delayed a census. Meanwhile the retreat follows a long fight over the inclusion of the question, which the Supreme Court blocked in June.
Furthermore critics called the question politically motivated and said it would lead to fewer immigrant households taking part. Reportedly the administration had argued that the question would bolster protections for minority voters. On Thursday, Mr Trump said: "We are not backing down on our effort to determine the citizenship status of the united states population and we will leave no stone unturned."
Moreover he said his executive order would require other government agencies to provide the Census Bureau with documents regarding citizenship. Mr Trump said at the White House "As a result of today's executive order we will be able to ensure the 2020 census generates an accurate count of how many citizens, non-citizens and illegal aliens are in the United States of America". Attorney General William Barr said the decision to abandon the citizenship question was a "logistical impediment, not a legal one".