President Urged to Bring Stability to Census
WASHINGTON, DC – As the Census Bureau enters a crucial moment that will determine the accuracy of the 2010 count, Members of Congress are urging President Bush to quickly fill high-level vacancies at the Bureau with seasoned, non-partisan professionals (letter to president). Already facing severe budget cuts that may hamper its work, the Bureau has been in flux since Director Louis Kincannon and his top deputy, Hermann Habermann, abruptly resigned on the same day in November.
Rep. Carolyn Maloney (NY-14), a longtime champion of census accuracy, is leading the effort to ensure that a professional, non-partisan director and deputy is named soon. 14 Members of Congress joined her letter to the president.
“Without adequate funding and without a new Director or permanent career deputy, the Census is like a rudderless ship, and an accurate count in 2010 is in serious jeopardy,” said Maloney. “I have a real concern that the president intends to fill the top vacancies at Census with partisan hacks instead of seasoned statisticians. We need to get the census back on track. I hope the president will heed our call.”
The loss of the two top officials at Census on the same day this close to a decennial count, as was the case in November, appears to be unprecedented. The upheaval comes at a critical time for the 2010 Census, which has already taken almost a decade to plan.
Also joining Rep. Maloney on the letter to the president was: Reps. Henry Waxman (D-CA), Charles Gonzales (D-TX), Wm. Lacy Clay (D-MO), Barney Frank (D-MA), Nita Lowey (D-NY), José Serrano (D-NY), Danny Davis (D-IL), Sam Farr (D-CA), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Michael Capuano (D-MA), Lloyd Doggett (D-TX), Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC), Lynn Woolsey (D-CA), Michael Michaud (D-ME).