John Minchillo / AP
Updated ET at 8:25 p.m.
U.S. The Census Bureau has decided that it will not be able to put together the first set of census results for this year until the December 31 deadline. The bureau says it needs to address regular “processing inconsistencies”.
Therefore, the bureau looks to January 26 as the new target date, a bureau employee who learned about the shift during an internal meeting on Thursday and spoke to NPR on condition of anonymity for fear of retaliation in the workplace.
The timetable change means stopping the handing out of counting figures that determine the share of each state’s congressional seats and the votes of the Electoral College Ledge in the next decade after President Trump’s term ends, which will count Trump’s unprecedented effort to change this key count.
“Anomalies in this type of process have occurred in past censuses,” said Steven Dillingam, the bureau’s director. ” A statement issued on Thursday. “I urge the Census Bureau to use all available resources to resolve this as soon as possible.”
The results of the first census released by the bureau are state censuses, which require a commerce secretary in federal law to oversee the bureau, to report to the president by December 31, to review any information collected by the bureau to find any errors. And fix.
Beginning in May, office career officials issued an early warning that they would not be able to provide state numbers by the end of the year due to disruptions caused by the coronavirus epidemic.
In fact, a month before April, the Trump administration asked Congress to extend the deadline for reporting the census to four months – a proposal taken by House Democrats and A small bipartisan group of senators But it has not yet become law.
The administration, however, makes a face in July. Trump began pressuring the bureau to stick to the Dec. 1 deadline, after which Trump issued a presidential memo calling for the removal of unauthorized immigrants from the census figures used to reclaim 5,435 seats in the House of Representatives, as well as voter turnout in the presidential election. , In the states.
Trump will need to get the numbers before his term ends on January 20, so he will try to change the numbers needed to hand over to Congress for certification.
The bureau’s public information office did not respond to NPR’s questions about the current timing of the first issue.
But Al Fontenot, the bureau’s top career official in charge of this year’s count, softened by confirming last month that the bureau would not be able to deliver results by the end of December.
“Right now our plan is that if we need more time to solve the problem that is coming, which will affect the quality of the census, we are taking it.” Fontenot said During 21 Oct Kto. Press briefing.
The New York Democrat, who chairs the House Oversight and Reform Committee, Repo. Sent by Caroline Maloney Letter to Dillingham on Thursday, The director of the bureau, asking to see by November 24 a schedule for reviewing all internal documents about any data processing problems as well as census results.
“Unfortunately, the committee was not informed of these discrepancies before it was made public,” Maloney wrote, adding that the bureau had canceled a number of weekly briefings scheduled for the committee this month.
The bureau’s announcement about the irregularities in the data comes a week before the Supreme Court is expected to hear oral arguments on November 30. Trump’s attempt to exclude unauthorized immigrants From the census part
Three judge panels in three lower courts have unanimously declared Trump’s memo illegal and in violation. Federal law The president is required to report to Congress “the total number of individuals in each state” based on a decade’s count, while One from the court Also found to be a memo Unconstitutional.
Even if Trump were to remove legal barriers, it is not clear whether the administration could create a number of unauthorized immigrants living in each state that could be excluded from the 2020 census.
till now, Justice Department lawyers have told multiple courts Except for the removal of unauthorized immigrants in immigration and customs enforcement detention centers, the administration has not yet come up with a final mechanism.
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