MN Congressional Seat May Be Down for the Count


Minnesota is in ‘dead heat’ with three other states for final seat
Date: December 23, 2009
Contact: Tom Gillaspy, State Demographer

Minnesota would just barely miss keeping its eight Congressional seats, based on an analysis of new state population estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau.

The Congressional reapportionment forecast by State Demographer Tom Gillaspy projects Missouri would receive the last seat apportioned, with Minnesota just missing by about 1,100 people – a difference of less than one month’s population change for Minnesota. The difference between California, Texas, Missouri and Minnesota for the last three seats is about 2,200 people, which is well within the potential estimating error.

“Basically, this is a dead heat,” said Gillaspy. “Remember, these are just estimates by the Census Bureau, and our chances of retaining eight seats are improving every day. What will decide the issue is getting everyone in Minnesota counted in the 2010 Census.” Every household in the state will receive the 10-question Census form in mid-March 2010, which should then be returned to the Census Bureau by April 1.

The Census Bureau estimates the population of Minnesota at 5,266,214 in July 2009, up by 35,647, or 0.68 percent, over 2008. This is similar to the growth experienced by Minnesota the previous year. North Dakota increased by 0.85 percent, a remarkable turnaround for a state that was declining in population at the beginning of the decade. South Dakota increased by 0.98 percent, Wisconsin by 0.48 percent and Iowa by 0.46 percent.

Apportionment – resetting the number of U.S. House of Representative seats allocated to each state as required by the Constitution – is based on the populations counted in the Census taken every 10 years. States projected to lose seats are Illinois, Iowa, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Ohio, which is expected to lose two. States projected to gain seats are Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Nevada, South Carolina, Utah, Washington and Texas, which is expected to gain four seats.


Yes, another press release (formatting & links added), and this one a month stale.  However, this week’s special election in Massachusetts reminded us again the impact of thin margins on the nation’s congressional make-up.  Wherever you are, make sure everybody counts, and is counted.


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