Congress, We Can't Afford to Bungle the 2020 Census

Ever wonder how Texas decides where to build that new highway? What about the grocery store chain's pick for its new location? Or even how the feds divvy up tax dollars for your neighborhood school?The census, that's how.For most Americans, the census is a mere inconvenience that rolls around every 10 years. But for anyone who relies on the results — and there are many, from academic researchers to state legislatures drawing election maps, to federal officials divvying up $600 billion in spending — the accuracy of the census is more than a benefit. It's absolutely critical.That's why it's alarming that the 2020 census is being threatened on two fronts: first, by Congress' refusal to adequately fund it and, second, by a growing concern about the impact of President Donald Trump's anti-immigrant rhetoric and fears that his administration will try to politicize the count.This country can't afford for either to happen.For generations, the census has been the gold standard when it comes to documenting demographic change in America. Without it, we wouldn't know basic facts about the people who live here, such as their standards of living and housing conditions, and what health care programs are required to serve them.  Continue reading...

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