(Aug. 7) – The members of the Colorado Democratic Latin@ Legislative Caucus wrote to Commerce Department Secretary Wilbur Ross today to express their strong opposition to the proposed addition of a citizenship question into the 2020 Census. The deadline for public comments is this evening at 9:59 pm MT. Latinos are the second largest population group in the country and represent over twenty-one percent of Colorado’s population.
“The validity of the Census carries significant constitutional, democratic, and fiscal consequences. The addition of an unnecessary, untested and highly fraught citizenship question will undermine this critical tool and put its validity in jeopardy, with disproportionate impacts on immigrant and Latino communities and the states where they live,” write the members. “We urge you to discard this question and to proceed with the Census as originally planned, and to dedicate sufficient resources to ensure a successful process. The stakes for our state, our nation, and our democratic institutions could not be higher.”
Valid Census data is tied to billions of dollars federal funding allocations for Colorado. The state received over $93 million in federal funding for Head Start programs and nearly $34 million in Community Development Block Grants for Fiscal Year 16 because of accurate Census data.
“Colorado currently receives over $8 billion in federal funding tied to key Census population data and is experiencing a rapidly growing population, so it is of critical importance to ensure that Coloradans are counted accurately,” the members write in their letter.
Read the full letter HERE.
Members of the Democratic Latin@ Legislative Caucus include Reps. Adrienne Benavidez, D-Adams County and Donald Valdez, D-La Jara, Co-Chairs; Speaker Crisanta Duran, D-Denver; Senate Democratic Leader Leroy Garcia, D-Pueblo; Assistant Senate Democratic Leader Lucia Guzman, D-Denver; Senator Irene Aguilar, D-Denver; Senator Dominick Moreno, D-Commerce City; Rep. Dan Pabon, D-Denver; and Rep. Joe Salazar, D-Thornton.