CorruptUser wrote:So the 2020 census is going to have a question as to whether or not the person is a citizen, mostly so that illegal immigrants won't answer and thus won't be counted. My question is thus. From a constitutional perspective, not a moral one, should non-legal residents be counted for purposes of determining the number of representatives a state has? The constitution m, amendment 14 section 2, states that it's based on counting the number of whole number of persons in each state, excluding Indians not taxed, but I don't know if non-legal residents are included in "whole number of persons".
Interestingly the section goes on to say that if adult non-criminal males have their voting rights restricted, the same restriction shall apply to the representation as a whole; ie, if you don't let black men vote you can't include them for getting representatives, but I've never heard of the Jim Crow states having fewer representatives as a result.
If memory serves, there is case law to the effect that either is valid(Supreme Court case in texas, 2016. Shot down an argument that illegal immigrants can't possibly be used for apportionment). Which is best, ehhhh. Assemble your lawyers, folks. In any case, yeah, a big part of the original constitutional debate was about how many representatives each state would get. That's why you have the somewhat unintuitive result of slaveowning states arguing for counting slaves as people. It wasn't from any moral place, it was a pretty straightforward desire for more power.
This is...pretty much the same here. Democrats are, given policies of sanctuary states, etc, benefited by using one defintion, while Republicans are benefited by the other. That's why both sides have the positions they do.
Yes, undercounting happens. The idea that this particular question is bad for undercounting, and not "are you hispanic"...well, it's doubtful to say the least. As it happens, I live right next to the county suing Trump over this(and lived in it for the 2010 census!). Prince George's County, MD. Yeah, they did get undercounted. By 2.3%. A couple percent might matter, sure, but given that this is literally one of the WORST examples in the country, I don't think it's very good evidence on it's own. And certainly not for this specific question, which wasn't listed. Also, it undercounted black folks by 2.1%, and Hispanic folks by 1.5%. Remember that it undercounted everyone by 2.3%. Those of you who understand averages can see the issue here.
It was probably more on people like my lazy butt who never got around to filling it out, and never had anyone check back. Whoops.
So yeah, the county did a crap job, but the census itself didn't really exclude the minority inhabitants. And there's little reason to think adding a question back would do so.
As a side effect that I'm certain is not the goal of the Republicans advocating this question, the question may actually produce useful data as well. Being able to break out in detail the effects of non-citizens on an area might be illuminating. It's not really a strange question. Many countries ask it, including, say Canada.
But really, the fight is over if political power should accrue to Sanctuary Cities by virtue of having lots of illegal immigrants. This question is intended to give fodder to the "no" side of that.
Zohar wrote:The census determines federal funds granted to local towns. It determines voting districts. It determines local programs to help residents. Whether I am a documented or undocumented immigrant, I still pay taxes, I'm still represented by elected officials, and I'm still a person living here. To imply that an undocumented immigrant is not a person is heinous.
How do undocumented immigrants pay income tax? Is there a way to pay that without a SIN? Or do companies just withhold taxes as usual, and then its on THEM to pay the government? Cause it seems like they'd just pocket that amount if there was no way of tracking it.
Depends on the kind of job. If they're faking records and fooling a company, then odds are it's withheld, and they probably won't be getting it back. If they're working as independent contractors, or if they're doing under the table work for cash, then it's not.
Some taxes are paid in other ways, such as sales taxes, however. Avoiding all tax entirely is hard, so pretty much everyone pays at least some, even if they dodge payroll taxation. However, this fight isn't really over taxation.
ObsessoMom wrote:How is your community going to plan for infrastructure projects IF IT DOESN'T KNOW HOW MANY PEOPLE THOSE PROJECTS NEED TO SERVE? When a sewage system is inadequate for the actual number of people using that system, the resulting sanitation problems will not just sicken the non-citizens. When a transportation system is inadequate for the actual number of people using that system, the resulting gridlock will not just affect the non-citizens. Etc., etc., etc.
Adding the question isn't a means of corrupting the data. They're not going to burn every census that doesn't claim citizenship. They're just asking the question. They are going to know how many people live there(even for the undercounting, they do have an idea of how much undercounting happens, so....they know). The data's quite accurate either way.
Ranbot wrote:Question... Can US Census respondents leave the citizenship question blank?
I've read in a few places there's an often cited law that requires responding to the US census [which hasn't been enforced since the 1970s], but I don't see if that includes not responding to parts of the census. The US census allows people to not respond to questions about their religion, so seems to be some flexibility. If a large enough number of people to leave the question blank in protest, regardless of one's actual citizenship status, that would make data inconclusive and not suitable for redistricting...
In practice, yes. You can opt to not return a form, or return a partially filled out form. Now, a census official may stop by to get additional information, but in practice, there seems to be pretty much no enforcement, regardless of what you are supposed to do.
CorruptUser wrote:So... make it easier for college educated immigrants to immigrate, while restricting uneducated workers?
We already do. Generally speaking, most first world countries have some practical standards for immigration that tend to favor those with education, money and health.