Why Is The Census So Important In American Politics
Why is the census so important in American politics? What is the major controversy that surrounds the method of counting in 2000?
The Constitution states that the amount of members in the House of Representatives for each state be based upon the amount of people in that State. To find out how many representatives should be given to each state, a census is performed every ten years. Once the data is received, states may lose or gain seats in the House depending on whether they gained or lost citizens. In the 2000 census, the census caused ten states to lose seats and eight states to gain seats in the House. Due to a sharper increase of citizens in the southern, more conservative states, the republican party benefitted from the reapportionment.
In the years before the 2000 census, there was much debate on whether a post-enumeration survey should be taken to estimate how many people were missed or counted twice, basically finding the scientific error. This survey would adjust the reapportionment and would probably favor the democrat party. However, the debate took such a long time that it did not meet the legal deadline and was thus