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Months before the Justice Department submitted a formal request for a citizenship question, pressure to add one to the 2020 census was mounting from a powerful decision-maker behind the national head count: Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross.

children with crayons
Pixabay

More than 100,000 Ohio children, and more than 1 million children under the age of five nationwide, are at risk of going uncounted in the 2020 Census.

Updated on April 27

Incomplete questionnaires for the 2020 census, including those that leave the controversial citizenship question unanswered, will still be included in the upcoming U.S. head count, the Census Bureau's top official confirmed Wednesday to lawmakers.

Downtown Akron Partnership

Akron is taking its first look at a resolution opposing a citizenship question the Trump administration plans to incorporate into the next U.S. Census. A group of 17 states and seven cities, none of which are in Ohio, are suing the Census Bureau and Commerce Department to remove the question.

The announcement of the addition of a citizenship question to the 2020 census questionnaire has launched calls for lawsuits, legislation and now multiple congressional hearings. In a letter written to the chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, which has oversight of the U.S.

Updated 2:30 a.m. ET Tuesday

The U.S. Commerce Department announced late Monday that it will restore a question about citizenship to the 2020 census questionnaire.

In an eight-page memo Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross says the Justice Department has requested that the census ask who is a citizen in order to help determine possible violations of the Voting Rights Act, to help enforce that law.

Updated at 3:36 p.m. ET Friday

A Census Bureau announcement about the race and ethnicity questions for the 2020 census suggests the Trump administration will not support Obama-era proposals to change how the U.S. government collects information about race and ethnicity, census experts say.

M.L. Schultze / WKSU

Ian Yarber, a former Oberlin school board member, considers himself a knowledgeable voter. He lives at the northeast end of Ohio’s 4th Congressional District, which stretches south and west nearly to the Indiana border.

Updated Dec. 6

"White" has been a constant of the U.S. census.

Other racial categories for the national head count have come and gone over the centuries. But "white" has stuck ever since U.S. marshals went door to door by horseback for the first census in 1790, tallying up the numbers of "free white males" and "free white females," plus "all other free persons" and "slaves."

After an outcry from advisers to the U.S. Census Bureau, the federal agency is no longer considering a proposal to remove a question about sexual orientation from a marketing survey for the 2020 Census.

A new leader is set to temporarily take over the U.S. Census Bureau after Director John Thompson retires from the post on Friday.

The Commerce Department, which is in charge of the bureau, has announced Ron Jarmin as the acting director. A career staffer who has spent 25 years at the Bureau, Jarmin currently serves as the associate director for economic programs.

America's diversity remains on the rise, with all racial and ethnic minorities growing faster than whites from 2015 to 2016, the U.S. Census Bureau says in a new snapshot of the national population. The agency also found the U.S. median age has risen to nearly 38.

Asian and mixed-race people are the two fastest-growing segments of the U.S. population, the U.S. Census Bureau says. Both groups grew by 3 percent from July 2015 to July 2016. In the same 12 months, the non-Hispanic white population grew by just 5,000 people.

The U.S. Census Bureau has never asked Americans about sexual orientation and gender identity. Last year, though, requests for that data came from more than 75 members of Congress and multiple federal agencies.

Still, the Census Bureau concluded "there was no federal data need" to collect this information, the bureau's outgoing director, John Thompson, wrote in March.

As work gears up for the 2020 Census, the bureau announced on Tuesday that Director John Thompson will leave the agency next month instead of at the end of the year.

"As I pursue opportunities in the private sector, please be assured that I will continue to be supportive of the administration's priority to have a complete and accurate 2020 Census," Thompson said in a statement.

The U.S. Census Bureau published a list on Tuesday of more than 50 planned topics of questions for the 2020 Census and the American Community Survey.

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