Big Red Car here getting ready to take a long drive to the Hill Country, but first a few words on the census and reapportionment.
Every ten years the United States conducts a census. It is done in order to reapportion the seats in the House of Representatives.
There are a fixed number of seats — 435. Right now, a Congressperson represents 712,000 persons.
In evaluating the arithmetic of Congressional representation it is important to know the following data points:
Total eligible to vote,
Total currently registered to vote, and,
Total currently registered to vote by party affiliation.
But, it all starts with the total number of people. Thus, the every decade – decennial – census. Its Constitutional basis is Article I, Section 2.
“Representatives shall be apportioned among the several States according to their respective numbers, counting the whole number of persons in each State, excluding Indians not taxed.”
Back in the day, slaves were counted though in a fractional manner. Today, everybody is counted including illegal aliens.
So, Big Red Car, what is the impact?
The impact — based on projections done in 2018 is that the following changes will happen:
States gaining Congresspersons
Arizona +1 (from 9 to 10)
Colorado +1 (from 7 to 8)
Montana +1 (from 1 to 2)
North Carolina +1 (from 13 to 14)
Oregon +1 (from 5 to 6)
Florida +2 (from 27 to 29)
Texas +3 (from 36 to 39)
States losing Congresspersons
Alabama -1 (from 7 to 6)
California -1 (from 53 to 52)
Michigan -1 (from 14 to 13)
Minnesota -1 (from 8 to 7)
New York -1 (from 27 to 26)
Ohio -1 (from 16 to 15)
Pennsylvania -1 (from 18 to 17)
Rhode Island -1 (from 2 to 1)
West Virginia -1 (from 3 to 2)
Illinois -2 (from 18 to 16)
Of course, this could change as the census hasn’t been completed and these are only projections.
Remember also that the congressional districts correlate with the number of “electors” in the Electoral College. So, a state like Texas will gain three more Congresspersons and three Electors.
What else, Big Red Car?
There are two side issues with the upcoming census.
1. The Trump admin wants to ask if the respondent to the census is legally in the United States. This is controversial and is headed to the Supreme Court, but the record clearly shows that the census can be used to acquire data of a broad nature.
2. The other issue is always re-districting whereby the states with changed numbers must re-draw its districts. Herein is the opportunity for major league mischief that is engaged in by both parties.
The Republicans will draw districts that offer Republican candidates the best possibility of being elected. The Dems will do the same. These matters often end up in court.
The census is conducted by census workers who will call on every home in their current district. It is a monumental undertaking.
So, dear reader, there you have it.