Conservative Group Challenges College Student Count

WASHINGTON, D.C.—The GOP-affiliated group Fair Lines America Foundation sued the Census Bureau in federal court on Tuesday. The group seeks the release of records around the Bureau’s data collection efforts in congregate settings, which include colleges and universities as well as prisons, group living facilities, nursing homes and more. Fair Lines has filed two FOIA requests with the Bureau for this data; the first was denied, and, this suit alleges, the second has exceeded the 20 day determination deadline. As such, Fair Lines is seeking relief from the Court. 

The request seeks to reveal a possible overcount of college students in the official Census Data, as part of the continuing effort by Republicans to suppress and limit the youth vote. The group is claiming that the methods used by the Bureau to deal with the coronavirus pandemic, which sent many college kids back home last spring, could have contributed to an overcount, despite the fact that the Bureau’s method, a technique called “imputation,” was previously deemed constitutional by the Supreme Court. 

Read the full complaint here.