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Adding Citizenship Question Risks 'Bad Count' For 2020 Census, Experts Warn

The Justice Department has asked the Census Bureau to reinstate a question about citizenship on the census. But some say that kind of question could jeopardize the headcount's accuracy.

Every decade, the U.S. Census Bureau asks some personal questions for the national headcount required by the constitution. But since 1960, one topic that hasn't come up for all U.S. residents is citizenship.

The Trump administration is trying to change that with a Department of Justice request for a question about citizenship on the 2020 census.

In a letter to the Census Bureau, first reported by ProPublica, a Justice Department official made the case for asking about citizenship. In order for the department to enforce the Voting Rights Act's protections against racial discrimination in voting, the official wrote, it needs a better count of citizens who are old enough to vote.

The Census Bureau confirms the bureau received the letter. "The request will go through the well-established process required for any potential new

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