Saturday, June 20, 2009

Bachmann, the Census, and ACORN

Minnesota Congresswoman Michelle Bachmann is causing a stir regarding her refusal to answer many of the questions on the 2010 census.

Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann told the Washington Times that she and her family will not be fully filling out the 2010 census forms.

Bachmann, a Republican, said her family will only be indicating the number of people in the household, because "the Constitution doesn't require any information beyond that."

Bachmann believes the upcoming census to be "very intricate" and "very personal" and expresses concerns about ACORN's involvement in the data collection. The community organizing program came under scrunity after charges of voter registration fraud during the 2008 presidential elections.

"I think what the threat of ACORN would be deluding the ballot box and the effectiveness of our vote," she said. "They will be in charge of going door to door and collecting data from the American public, this is very concerning."

Bachmann also expressed frustration at the president's backing for ACORN, saying he has supplied $8.4 billion to ACORN since he has come into office, a number that far surpasses the $53 million given in the past 15 years.

First off, the shady organization ACORN should be put under investigation as an organization for voter fraud. Many of their employees and/or associates have been convicted of voter fraud in the past regarding registration. They need to be far away from the census which should not be politicized. By law, the census is required to be non-partisan.

As far as refusing to answer questions on the census, well that is against the law, and the census is one of the issues that is specifically enumerated to the federal government. The law states:

Whoever, being over eighteen years of age, refuses or willfully neglects, when requested by the Secretary, or by any other authorized officer or employee of the Department of Commerce or bureau or agency thereof acting under the instructions of the Secretary or authorized officer, to answer, to the best of his knowledge, any of the questions on any schedule submitted to him in connection with any census or survey provided for by subchapters I, II, IV, and V of chapter 5 of this title, applying to himself or to the family to which he belongs or is related, or to the farm or farms of which he or his family is the occupant, shall be fined not more than $100.

It's a $100 fine. It's a $500 fine for a "false answer." In other words, it's a traffic ticket financially. I'm not sure however if it is considered a civil infraction of eqivalent, or a misdemeanor without doing more research. Exceptions are made for religious purposes. Those questions can be refused an answer. Now, I need to check and see HOW I can answer them.

Census 2010 has its website out. - It is something we all need to keep an eye on to make sure that this doesn't become a nightmare due to the shady and unsavory characters of ACORN. So far, little is known except that Gary Locke appointed former New Orleans Mayor Marc Morial as chair of the advisory commission. "New Orleans Mayor" automaticaly gets my guard up a bit. That's not exactly the most cleanly run city in this country. It's right there with Obama's Chicago and Boss Daley when it comes to corruption. By law, the census is supposed to be non-partisan, so a close eye needs to be kept here.

There is no long form for the census this year.
The 2010 Census will be a short-form only census and will count all residents living in the United States as well as ask for name, sex, age, date of birth, race, ethnicity, relationship and housing tenure – taking just minutes to complete.

However, the American Community Survey replaced it, and is required by law. Heads up there. This replaces the long form and is what likely strongly concerns Bachmann.

Now as far as I'm concerned, name and number of people in the household, is the only thing that SHOULD be asked. The rest is none of their damn business. I'd like to see government stop classifying people by race. If we ever are going to get past race in this country, it starts with that. Start treating people as individuals. The one that pisses me off through is income (ACS Survey). That one I will do whatever legally possible to give an answer that does not lie or give them what they want to see.

The purpose of these surveys and census information outside of counting people and redistricting information is for government programs. This is used for determining government funding - most of which shouldn't be the job of the federal government to begin with outside of federal infastructure (Interstate Freeways, US Highways). The more that hampers this, the better. Most of this stuff should be a state and local issue, not the domain of Washington DC.


bear said...

I actually had the "counters" get all riled up because I only offered number of people in house last time the census was done. The person tried to open the door and come inside and such, " sorry you stay on the steps".

My brother was harrassed by the census last time.

forward-observer said...

When they ask 'Race' on the Census form,

I always write down 'Human".

That seems to work fine with them.