Benjamin L. Cardin

05/01/2019 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 05/01/2019 12:40

Maryland Congressional Delegation Discussion with Census Bureau Leadership Focuses on Lack of Readiness for 2020 Tally, Chilling Effect of Including Question on Citizenship

May 01, 2019

WASHINGTON - The membersofMaryland's congressional delegation yesterday hosted a discussion with U.S. Census Bureau Director Steven Dillingham and other experts to explore Maryland's readiness for the 2020 count.

'It is easy to overlook the importance of the census, but doing so will badly shortchange Maryland,' said U.S. Senator Ben Cardin. 'Our congressional delegation took the opportunity to directly engage the U.S. Census Bureau's leaders on whether we will see an accurate count in every part of our state, to identify the barriers to 100 percent participation, and to implore Census Bureau leadership to help us overcome those barriers - while avoiding any new ones.'

'The Census isn't just a tally of the number of people in our country. It helps determine federal investments critical to every community in our state - from funding for infrastructure projects to education and public health initiatives to natural disaster response. I appreciate the Census Bureau's willingness to meet with us and answer our questions today. I remain committed to ensuring that our Census process is fair and representative of all Maryland residents, and I will continue working in Congress on this crucial issue,' said Senator Chris Van Hollen.

'Ensuring the 2020 Census is accurate is an issue of critical importance to the state of Maryland and our nation as a whole. The Trump Administration's attempt to include a citizenship question would without a doubt discourage participation in the Census and hurt our democracy,' said House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer. 'I will continue to work with my colleagues in the Maryland Delegation to ensure a fair and accurate census next year.'

'Today's Maryland delegation meeting with census leaders highlighted the importance of Maryland obtaining a full and accurate count in the upcoming 2020 census. For every individual in Maryland that isn't counted, it could lead to more than $1,800 in lost funding per person, per year, over the next 10 years. This not only impacts funding for vital programs like education and childcare, but also funding for parks, roads, and libraries and other necessities that improve our quality of life,' said U.S. Representative Elijah E. Cummings. 'As an honorary co-chair of Baltimore's 2020 Census Complete Count Committee, I am committed to boosting participation in the census-- especially in hard-to-count communities.'

'One of our primary obligations as lawmakers is to fight for our fair share of the pie on behalf of our state and constituents. I can think of few tools more important to this effort than an accurate Census,' said U.S. Representative C.A. 'Dutch' Ruppersberger. 'I thank the Census leadership team for meeting with us today and helping to ensure fair and complete results for Maryland as we approach the 2020 count.'

'The Maryland Congressional Delegation held an important meeting today with leaders from the U.S. Census Bureau to ensure that our state sees an accurate count for the 2020 census,' said Congressman Sarbanes. 'We will continue to work with the Bureau to overcome obstacles and enhance Maryland residents' participation in the census, especially in light of efforts by the Trump Administration to undermine the 2020 count by including a citizenship question.'

'It is critically important that we count every Marylander in the Census because these numbers determine federal investments in our communities,' said U.S. Representative David Trone. 'I made it clear to the Director how important it was to ensure an accurate count, and as a delegation we expressed our view that including a citizenship question in the Census will not help us achieve this goal.'

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