October 10, 2009

Glenn Beck devoted a long rant last night to his contention that the U.S. Census Bureau shouldn't be counting what he blithely calls "illegal aliens" -- i.e., undocumented immigrants.

But his argument -- that we shouldn't be counting people who can't vote -- doesn't merely cut against the undocumented. It cuts against all immigrants -- who, by definition, are also already non-citizens.

Moreover, the Census Bureau isn't charged with accurately counting the number of citizens living within the United States -- it's charged with counting the entire population.

What Beck wants Census to do -- that is, to exclude non-citizens from its count -- is in direct violation of its charter, which is to count the population whole:

The Census Bureau does not ask about legal (migrant) status of respondents in any of its survey and census programs. As examples, in the decennial census, the American Community Survey, and Current Population Survey as there is no legislative mandate to collect this information. Given the success of Census 2000 in counting nearly every person residing in the United States, we expect that unauthorized migrants were included among people who indicated that the United States was their usual place of residence on the survey date. The foreign-born population includes naturalized U.S. citizens, lawful permanent residents, temporary migrants (e.g., foreign students), humanitarian migrants (e.g., refugees), and unauthorized migrants (people illegally present in the United States).

Beck would have the Census omit not just unauthorized migrants, but also lawful permanent residents, humanitarian migrants, and foreign-born residents here legally.

Of course, he's arguing for this because he believes counting the undocumented will give the eeeeevil SEIU more power in its quest for total global domination or something like that. You have to watch the video to get it all, and even then it never quite holds together, much less make sense.

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