CJS Appropriations Bill Held Up By Census Amendment

CJS Appropriations Bill Held Up By Census Amendment

Senate progress on completing the Commerce-Justice-Science appropriations bill (H.R. 2847), which funds NASA, NSF, and NOAA, has slowed due to a Vitter-Bennett amendment that would prohibit funding for the upcoming 2010 census and future censuses unless “questions regarding United States citizenship and immigration status” are included. The amendment prompted protests at the Capitol today by a number of civil rights groups and a rally against the proposal is scheduled for Thursday* according to Congress Daily (subscription required). Senator Bennett’s explanation of the amendment on the Senate floor is available on YouTube.

The census is conducted every 10 years as required by Article 1 Section 2 of the U.S. Constitution (as modified by Amendment XIV) in order to apportion seats in the U.S. House of Representatives, though the data are used for many other purposes.

*Congress Daily reported this evening that the rally will take place on Thursday instead of tomorrow as originally reported. The slip apparently is due to schedule conflicts.

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