The Census Results are coming! The Census Results are coming!

The U.S. Census Bureau will release the first set of 2010 Census data at a news conference Tuesday, Dec. 21 at 11 a.m. EST at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. The 2010 Census data to be released include the resident population for the nation and the states as well as the congressional apportionment totals for each state.

2010 Census and Apportionment

The 2010 Census began last January in a remote corner of Alaska and in the months that followed, America stepped up and achieved a successful census. As mandated by the Constitution, the census counts every resident in the United States every 10 years to determine the number of seats each state receives in the U.S. House of Representatives. Beginning this month, the nation will see the first results from the 2010 Census as a new portrait of America begins to take shape.



Number of seats in the U.S. House of Representatives to be apportioned among the 50 states. Each state has at least one representative. Apportionment is the process of dividing the 435 seats in the House of Representatives among the 50 states, based on the population figures collected during the decennial census. The number of seats in the House has grown with the country. Congress sets the number in law and increased the number to 435 in 1913. The Constitution set the number of representatives at 65 from 1787 until the first Census of 1790, when it was increased to 105 members.

Every 10 years

Time frame in which an apportionment of representatives among the states must be carried out, as mandated by Article 1, Section 2 of the U.S. Constitution. The first census was conducted in 1790. The 2010 Census is the 23rd census in American history.

Apportionment Population

People living in the 50 states, including adults, children, citizens and noncitizens, are counted in the apportionment population. In the 2010 Census, the apportionment population also included U.S. Armed Forces personnel and federal civilian employees serving outside the United States (and their dependents living with them).

Residents of the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Island Areas

Populations that are excluded from the apportionment population because they do not have voting seats in the U.S. House of Representatives. The District of Columbia, the US Virgin Islands, Guam and American Samoa are all represented by delegates. Puerto Rico, however, is represented by a “resident commission,” a position created by Congress in 1946

Dec. 31, 2010

Date by which the President must receive the 2010 Census apportionment counts for each state, as required by Title 13, U.S. Code. The date is mandated as nine months from Census Day, which was April 1, 2010.

One Week

Upon the opening of the new session of Congress, the time frame, according to Title 2, U.S. Code, by which the President must report to the U.S. House of Representatives the apportionment population counts for each state and the number of representatives to which each state is entitled.


Number of days, after receiving the apportionment population counts from the President, that the clerk of the House of Representatives has to inform each state governor of the number of representatives to which that state is entitled.

Method of Equal Proportions

Method used to calculate the apportionment as decided by Congress, in accordance with the provisions of Title 2, U.S. Code. Each state is assigned one seat. Then, the apportionment formula allocates the remaining 385 congressional seats one at a time among the 50 states until all 435 seats are assigned. You can also learn more about apportionment through the video The Amazing Apportionment Machine up above.

1940 Census

Census that the method of equal proportions was first used. The formula has been used in every census since, as directed by Congress, to apportion the U.S. House of Representatives.


Year the reapportioned Congress, according to 2010 Census data, will first convene. It will be the 113th Congress.

Apportionment vs. redistricting

Apportionment is the process of determining the number of seats for each state in the U.S. House of Representatives based on the decennial census. Redistricting is the process of revising the geographic boundaries within a state from which people elect their representatives to the U.S. House of Representatives, state legislature, county or city council, school board, etc.

April 1, 2011

Date when all states must receive redistricting data, in accordance with Public Law 94-171.


2010 Census


Number of questions on the 2010 Census form, one of the shortest in U.S. history.

134 million

Approximate number of total housing units in the U.S. contacted for the 2010 Census, either by mail or in person, to collect a form or determine if vacant.


Percentage of households that returned a 2010 Census form by mail, matching the mail participation rate achieved during the 2000 Census.


Number of states that, in 2010, met or exceeded their 2000 Census mail participation rate. The District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, 1,553 counties, and 278 cities and townships of 50,000 or more, also met or exceeded their rates.

$85 million

Estimated amount of taxpayer money the Census Bureau saved for each percentage point increase in the 2010 Census mail-back response rate. The Census Bureau saved money by not having to go door to door to count households that did not return the 2010 Census questionnaire by mail.

More than $400 billion

Amount in federal funds distributed each year to states and communities based in part on census population data.

1.4 million

The number of people hired for the 2010 Census in fiscal years 2009 and 2010.


Approximate number of positions hired for the door-to-door follow-up phase in 2010.

For life

The length of time a census worker is sworn to protect the confidentiality of census information.


Number of partner organizations that helped the Census Bureau spread the message out about the importance of the 2010 Census and mailing back the questionnaire.


2000 Census


Official resident population of the United States on April 1, 2000.


Percentage increase of the nation’s population from 1990 to 2000.


Population of California, the most populous state in the country on April 1, 2000. The least populous was Wyoming (493,782).


Percentage growth of Nevada’s population from 1990 to 2000, the highest in the nation.


Approximate number of people each member of the U.S. House represents, on average, as apportioned by the 2000 Census.


Number of states that gained two congressional seats in 2000. They were Arizona, Florida, Georgia and Texas.


Number of states that lost two congressional seats in 2000. They were New York and Pennsylvania.


Number of states that did not gain or lose a congressional seat in 2000.

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