2020 Census: Are you a US Citizen?

Monday, April 9, 2018 - 11:15

The Commerce Department, which oversees the Census Bureau, has announced that they will ask on the 2020 Census, “Are you a US Citizen?” This question is to gauge how many eligible voters currently live in the nation, helping enforce Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act. However, critics argue that this will deter many from filling out the census. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross has released a memorandum explaining this decision, and how the benefits of this question outweigh the possible lower response rates. The citizenship question is not new: it was included in the Decennial Census for more than 100 years before 1950. Though smaller surveys, like the American Community Survey (ACS)do gather information on citizenship status, concerns include inaccurate redistricting of areas with high numbers of illegal immigrants. The Bureau was required to submit a final list of the 2020 Census questions to Congress by the end of March.