Census Bureau Acknowledges Undercounting in Illinois, Prompting Concerns and Calls for Fairness

Featured & Cover Census Bureau Acknowledges Undercounting in Illinois Prompting Concerns and Calls for Fairness

In a recent development, Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi has expressed relief over the acknowledgment by the Census Bureau regarding a significant undercount of residents in Illinois during the 2020 census. Krishnamoorthi, taking to X on Jan 6, shared his commitment to “fighting to prevent similar undercounting and ensure our state receives its fair share of federal funding.”

The state of Illinois had earlier released a report that brought to light the undercount, revealing that the U.S. Census Bureau had overlooked 46,400 residents during the 2020 Census. This revelation was a result of the Post-Census Group Quarters Review, a collaborative effort involving the Census Bureau, the state of Illinois, and NORC at the University of Chicago, which identified 733 undercounted or missed group quarters during the census.

This undercounting discrepancy has potential implications, affecting both representation and funding allocations for the state. Krishnamoorthi emphasized the importance of a fair census count, stating, “For the last two years, I have partnered with the Governor in calling for a fair census count to guarantee our state and our citizens receive the requisite federal funding we deserve.”

Furthermore, he highlighted the need to attract more businesses and people to Illinois, recognizing that efforts must continue to ensure the state’s social and economic growth. Krishnamoorthi affirmed his commitment to working with Governor Pritzker and other state leaders toward this mission.

Responding to the U.S. Census Bureau’s data indicating a decline in Illinois’ population on December 20, 2023, Krishnamoorthi issued a statement questioning the accuracy of the Census Bureau’s projections. He pointed out the inconsistency with the Bureau’s own 2022 analysis, which found that its earlier projections had been incorrect, and Illinois’ population had actually grown to a new high.

“The Census Bureau’s latest population estimates (and the opportunistic bashing of our state) only raise the question of why the Census Bureau’s own analysis in 2022 found that its projections had been wrong, and Illinois’ population actually grew to a new high,” Krishnamoorthi stated.

Expressing ongoing interest in obtaining answers to these discrepancies, Krishnamoorthi emphasized the importance of understanding what went wrong in the 2020 Census to ensure Illinois receives a fair share of federal resources. The lack of clarity on these issues, he noted, leaves the state without a proper accounting of the undercounting problem.

Initially, Illinois had reported a loss of over 18,000 residents between 2010 and 2020, representing approximately 0.1% of its population. Following a recount request filed by the state, the individuals recounted will not be added to the 2020 census figures. However, they will be considered in future censuses, impacting year-to-year calculations and potentially leading to additional federal funding for the state.

The acknowledgment of the undercounting issue in Illinois by the Census Bureau has raised concerns about the accuracy of population estimates and potential consequences for representation and funding. Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi continues to advocate for a fair census count and seeks answers to discrepancies in population projections to ensure Illinois receives its fair share of federal resources. The recount request filed by the state adds a layer of complexity, as the recounted individuals will not be reflected in the 2020 census figures but will play a role in future calculations and funding allocations.

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