UNITED STATES CENSUS

The coming census in 2020 is sparking a lot of debate on what should be included or not. Lets start with a definition from Wikipedia.

The United States Census is a decennialcensus mandated by Article I, Section 2 of the United States Constitution, which states: “Representatives and direct Taxes shall be apportioned among the several States … according to their respective Numbers … .

What I find really interesting, especially with the citizenship question being questioned, is “Decennial U.S. Census figures are based on actual counts of persons dwelling in U.S. residential structures. They include citizens, non-citizen legal residents, non-citizen long-term visitors and undocumented immigrants.” My interpretation of that is everyone is counted if possible, citizen or not, and that determines representatives and taxes. Let that sink in.

Many past census sparked debates on how many were or not counted by race, color, creed, etc.. In the past the method of collecting the information was called outdated. In my lifetime I have seen workers go door to door, hand delivered forms, and mailings. Now the 2020 census will be conducted mostly by internet potentially missing everyone without internet access. I am sure it is a huge task to try to include everyone and get maximum and most accurate information.

But now there is a debate over the citizenship questions. I have seen many comments and opinions on how it suppress the vote, hurt voter turnout and a lot of other misconceived ideas. I personally think it is good to bring it back, as we seem do not have any idea how many non-citizens including undocumented are in the USA and straining services. So lets look at that.

On March 26, 2018 the U.S. Dept of Commerce announced plans to re-include a citizenship question in the 2020 census questionnaire which has not been included on the short form since 1950 but was part of the long form starting in 1910 until the discontinuation of the long form in 2010. Proponents of including the question claimed it is necessary to gather an accurate statistical count, while opponents claimed it might suppress responses and therefore lead to an inaccurate count.  Multiple states have sued the Trump administration arguing that the proposed citizenship question is unconstitutional and may intimidate illegal aliens and undocumented workers, resulting in inaccurate data on immigrant communities.  In January 2019 a federal judge in New York ruled against the proposal; the U.S. Government appealed that decision to the U.S. Supreme Court which heard oral arguments in April 2019 about whether the citizenship question was constitutional and whether the Secretary of Commerce followed the law when deciding to add the question.

So asking the question now is bad, but since 1910 was it was not questioned? I think it is a good question. I believe that tax paying and eligible voting citizens are actually required and the two qualifying factors to determine representatives and how taxes are spent. Also, all felons should be excluded also, since they lost their right to vote.

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