There is a lot of policy surrounding illegal immigration these days, and an accurate estimate of the number of people in the United States who are and who are not citizens would be valuable for creating and refining these policies. Without these counts, it is hard to know how much money should be allocated certain ways.
There is a difference between a U.S. citizen and someone who just lives in the U.S. If the government starts treating anyone who is in the U.S. the same way that they treat citizens, then our nation becomes meaningless. The U.S. government, therefore, needs to know who is a citizen and who is not.
It is bad enough, in this country, that we have to worry about illegal immigrants abusing our system, but for them to not be counted is wrong. We have a right to know how many, and even who, in this country, are not citizens. It not only impacts the economy and job market, but also has a drastic impact on our national security.
The census is supposed to be counting and tracking information on the people who live in the United States. Tracking those who are not even supposed to be living here is a waste, and throws off numbers. Keep the numbers aimed towards the people who legally live here.
I do not understand why anyone should be offended to show their citizenship to their country. It is a completely fair question to ask. Honestly, I do not see how it would help very much because people who break the law very well may lie or simply not fill out a census form. There is no harm done in putting this question on the form, though.
There are over 12 million illegal immigrants in the United States. These people are not residents who are able to vote and, because the redistricting of district lines will occur after the census has been taken, the added numbers of illegal immigrants who cannot vote will cause the lines to be redrawn based on illegal immigration, not on how many citizens are present.
Citizenship questions should be included in the census, because census information is used to determine many important programs. Districts for the United States House of Representatives are allocated by population. It is grossly unfair for native-born Americans and naturalized Americans to be denied their right to vote, because illegal aliens are present in another location.
The census is conducted to measure the amount of people in each area. If someone is not a citizen in this country it needs to be known so we can keep an accurate count. It will also help us to identify where the biggest immigration problems in our country are located. It is an absolutely necessary question in my opinion.
If you don't have to say if you are a citizen or not, there is no precise way to tell who is really living and working here. That is part of the reason this country has such a problem with jobs. Unless you keep track of who is here, there will be problems explaining why situations occur - such as those with the jobs market.
The United States government should not take into account illegal aliens. They are taxing our system and areas where they live, and they should not be compensated or counted for being here illegally.
We should not ask the citizenship question on census forms. The census form is not meant to be a check on the legality of the immigration status of respondents. It is meant to be a process to keep track of data on the types of citizens currently inhabiting our country, and not their legal status. That is the job of the INS. The obvious flaw in this proposal is that respondents who are here illegally will have one of three choices. (1) lie, say they are citizens, fill in the form and return it, providing inaccurate information, which defeats the purpose of the census-taking. (2) don't fill out the form, throw it away, and thus also defeating the purpose of the census-taking. (3) tell the truth, send the form in, and hope that the Census Bureau is not sharing information with the INS, who may now come knocking at their door. I doubt that very many illegal immigrants will choose "door number 3". It is unfortunate that, after talking about the immigration problem for decades, this is the best "solution" we have been able to come up with. This is what happens when we have too many politicians and too few statesmen.
What would be the point of asking about citizenship on the census? The purpose of the census is to account for the individuals whom reside in this country and allocate resources appropriately. (At least, that's what they tell us.) Whether someone is a citizen, or not, does not change the fact that they are on American soil and utilize the resources in their community. Also, asking a citizenship question would scare away those who participate in the census based on the fact that they are assured of that citizenship doesn't matter when filling it out.
It would be great if we could get a count of the total number of illegal aliens residing in the US. However, it is unlikely that an illegal alien would answer this question honestly, and it would further burden and slow down the census taking to try to determine the accuracy of the census reports.
In addition, my understanding is that one of the purposes of the census is to allocate federal funds for services to local populations based on the number of people they have. At the current time, hospitals, schools, fire departments, and clinics have to provide services for all residents, even those that are illegal. Therefore, funds need to be allocated for all residents. Therefore, this question is unnecessary.
The 2010 Census left the citizenship question out for good reason. It is unconstitutional, for one thing. US Census Bureau recognizes this fact, stating it is "...required by the U.S. Constitution to count everyone in this country, regardless of immigration or citizenship status." This is a good thing; asking citizenship would encourage some immigrants not to answer, and this would undercut needed money for state services that will inevitably pay for immigrant services either way.