Why is the decision by the Administration, through its Department of Commerce Census Bureau, to count all residents of the United States without regard to resident status in the 2010 Census a big deal?
Before we can answer this question, we need some background. The United States Census is the cornerstone of our constitutional republic. It is the ultimate arbiter of how states are represented in the House of Representatives and how the President of the United States is elected by the Electoral College. Due to the cornerstone nature of the Census to our nation, it is unconscionable to make the 2010 Census subject to tampering, manipulation, a skewed citizen count, or an ideological interpretation. Why will it be skewed if the current Census Director, members of Congress, and the Administration proceed as intended?
Article I Section 2 of our Constitution originally provided for the enumeration of “persons” of the several states. At the time the Constitution was adopted, “persons” consisted of free persons and a three fifths fraction of the slaves inhabiting this land, with the exception of Indians. Let’s look to a further clarification of the intent of the Founders at the time of ratification of the Constitution by the states. We find in Article II, Section 1 instructions on the presidency eligibility: “No person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution…” Thus all persons residing in the United States at ratification were considered to be Citizens of the United States and thus the term persons referred to Citizens. We also find that the Fourteenth Amendment in Section 2, which modified Article 1 Section 2, requires “…counting the whole number of all persons…” eliminating the fraction and the counting only of free persons.
Before you go off on a tangent about the callous use of a “fraction” of slaves, the compromise method was to prevent the people of the Southern States from having a lopsided vote and a lopsided representation in the House of Representatives and the Electoral College and a “super vote”, if you will, using slaves to inflate the population count, while only white men voted. Now to the big deal!
The 2010 census operation fully plans to count any person legal or illegal, citizen or non-citizen—remember only citizens can vote. We should be counting only “persons” which in the Constitution is synonymous with citizens. Failure to do this means that states with an abundance of people who are not citizens made up of both legal and illegal residents, without the right to vote, will be unjustly rewarded with more representatives in Congress for law making and taxation and a greater weight to the Electoral College to elect the president of the United States. If we grant more representatives and more electoral votes to these states, then we seriously skew the one person (citizen) one vote rule. We end up giving the citizens of these states the power to cast what amount to those “super votes”. Essentially, a smaller electorate will have the power of a larger state population.
Senator Vitter of Louisiana, Senator Bennett of Utah, and Representative Chaffets of Utah, want to add a question to the Census Questionnaire, which asks “are you a citizen?” They are not being received very well, by the Bureau of the Census and members of Congress. Seems like a logical and appropriate constitutional question to ask during a census, as we are also asking many other questions that are not nearly as important as how many possible legitimate voters exist to apportion House seats and to be represented in the Electoral College—remember only citizens are supposed to vote and be counted in Congress.
We must be cognizant of and stand up to prevent this ideological effort to establish an unbalanced and truly un-constitutional apportionment in the House of Representatives and in Electoral College voting to states with a large illegal population.