Q&A – Role The Census Plays In Congress And The Electoral College

Today’s question was submitted by Rusty - I have read several articles explaining how the House Seats are apportioned. It seems that California, Texas, and Florida have gained seats as Midwest and Flyover territory have lost seats. No wonder Democrats want open borders. More political power with fewer votes to win. Also, cities want illegals so as to get more apportioned money. Could you look into this, am I wrong? Not mention increase power in Electoral College, when electing a president. Those cities and states are offering services and housing so as to increase money and power they get by having illegals who by the way have more children than Americans. 

Bottom Line: This serves as a natural follow-up to Friday’s Q&A on the Electoral College. The Census Bureau is always at work providing ongoing data that’s used by various agencies. It’s the work that’s Constitutionally mandated every ten years that’s the most important. Just as the Electoral College was created under Article 1 section 2 of the US Constitution. Every ten years since 1790, the Census Bureau has been tasked with providing an updated count of persons in every state across the country. 

Census information is used to provide the populations in each state, which determines the number of Electoral College votes each state has. It’s also used to draw Congressional Districts and allocated funding to each. So yes, to your question the influence of illegal immigration, to the extent it’s counted in the Census does - directly leads to very specific outcomes in the Presidential and Congressional elections. This is true even if the illegal immigrants don’t vote directly. To estimate the impact on current cycles in advance of our 2020 Census here’s a rough estimate.

In the 2010 Census, the population count was about 309 million people. The conservative estimate of illegal immigrants in the US was around 12 million according to the Pew Research Center. That means that the potential for about 4% of the Electoral College and Congressional seats to have been manipulated by illegal immigrants being counted existed. To put a number to it... 

Potential impact in the 2010 Census due to illegal immigration:

  • Electoral College: 21 votes
  • US House of Representatives: 17 seats

Not insignificant right? The impact in the Electoral College was potentially greater than a state of the size of Illinois or Pennsylvania. So yes, it matters significantly. The top states for illegal immigrants are:

  • #5: DC/Virginia
  • #4: Florida
  • #3: Texas
  • #2: New York
  • #1: California

Three out of the top five states for illegal immigration, including the top two, are blue states further illustrating the point about Democrats potentially benefiting from illegal immigration politically. It’s a valid concern for many reasons.

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Photo by: Alex Wong/Getty Images

 

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