Census Nominee Receives Committee Approval as Delayed 2020 Data Released
On August 4, the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs voted (10-4) to advance the nomination of Dr. Robert Santos to lead the Census Bureau (see previous coverage). Santos now moves to consideration by the full Senate, but the timing of a vote to confirm him remains unclear. Ron Jarmin remains Acting Director of the Census Bureau.
The Census Bureau released redistricting data from the 2020 Census on August 14, the second major data release from the decennial census. Compared with the previously released apportionment data, the redistricting data paints a much more detailed geographic and demographic picture of the U.S. population. The release of the data had been delayed due to the disruptions caused by the pandemic, a source of concerns for states who rely on it to draw voting district boundaries. The data files are also the first to be protected using differential privacy, a technique that protects individual records from reidentification by adding a carefully calibrated level of “noise” to the data. More information about the data is available on the Census Bureau’s website.