April 1st, 2010
06:12 PM ET
4 years ago

GOP Rep. urges conservatives to complete census forms

Rep. McHenry is urging conservatives to fill out their census forms.
Rep. McHenry is urging conservatives to fill out their census forms.

Washington (CNN) - Rep. Patrick McHenry, R-North Carolina, has a message for fellow conservatives on National Census Day: "I'm worried about this year's census."

In a post Thursday on the conservative Web site RedState, McHenry expressed concerns about "blatant misinformation" about the census "coming from otherwise well-meaning conservatives." Some on the right have claimed that the census is unconstitutional, he wrote. Others fear that its results will be politicized by the Obama administration.

"They are trying to do the right thing," McHenry wrote, "but instead they are helping big government liberals by discouraging fellow conservatives from filling out their census forms."

McHenry warned that low participation among conservatives could result in Democrats having a big advantage in the next round of congressional re-districting.

"Few things make will make Nancy Pelosi happier than large numbers of conservatives failing to respond to the census," he wrote. "If we do not respond, we will not be counted and if we are not counted, then we effectively will not exist."

McHenry was one of three GOP congressmen who rebuked Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minnesota, last year when she urged conservatives to avoid filling out their entire census form. She said at the time that it would be unconstitutional to provide any information other than basic family details.

In his RedState post, McHenry told conservatives to avoid leaving any questions blank.

"No one has advocated a direct boycott of the census but there have been calls to only partially fill out census forms – even though that would be a direct violation of federal law," he wrote. "Those calls are the problem."


Filed under: Census • Republicans
soundoff (31 Responses)
  1. Albo58

    I filled mine out and in the race column, I put AMERICAN!

    April 1, 2010 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  2. rdepontb

    No, no, no! They're right-the census is a scam on our citizenry! DO NOT FILL IT OUT-IT WILL ONLY HELP DEMOCRATS!!

    April 1, 2010 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |
  3. Chris

    Not sure what census form these folks are talking about, but mine said nothing about political party affiliation. And I suppose the only reason Bachmann and her ilk are against sending it in is because a democrat is in office? Is this an April Fools joke or are these folks just fools?

    April 1, 2010 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |
  4. Dustin

    Wouldn't it be perfect if all of this negative fera-mongoring and lying backfired on the Republicans because they scared their own constituents into running the party into the ground? That would be perfect! Would you really xpect these uneducated people to understand what the census is really for?

    April 1, 2010 06:22 pm at 6:22 pm |
  5. Michelle Bachman is a Moron

    She is encouraging people to violate the law. That should disqualify her from serving in Congress.

    April 1, 2010 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  6. Dave

    The GOP has created a fringe movement and they will have to deal with the government being hated and mistrusted no matter who wins elections now. It is a bad idea to pit Americans against our own system when you are a product of it. Also, about the unicorn joke, Obama should just reply to the advertisement: “Without the GOP’s support none of this would be possible.”

    April 1, 2010 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  7. ThinkAgain

    Um, do all the paranoid yahoos out there listening to Michelle Bachmann realize that the census is mentioned in the United States Constitution, in Article 1, Section 2 and in the Fourteenth Amendment?

    Counting the number of people allows the government to better allocate resources, including tax dollars.

    Perhaps our Constitution should be amended further so that folks stupid enough to believe the lies of the Right don't receive any Federal dollars ...

    April 1, 2010 06:30 pm at 6:30 pm |
  8. ThinkAgain

    McHenry said, "No one has advocated a direct boycott of the census but there have been calls to only partially fill out census forms – even though that would be a direct violation of federal law," he wrote. "Those calls are the problem."

    I beg to differ: In July 2009, Rep. Michele Bachmann specifically told supporters that she would not fill out the census, and encouraged them to do so.

    April 1, 2010 06:31 pm at 6:31 pm |
  9. MikeH

    The Conservative mind is so primitive, you need to communicate by drawing pictures on cave walls for them to (maybe) understand.

    April 1, 2010 06:33 pm at 6:33 pm |
  10. Perusing-through

    HEY McHENRY, BE QUIET! YOU ARE SPILLING THE BEANS.

    Conservatives are following the advice of Minnesota Republican Congresswoman Michele Bachmann and Texas Republican Governor Rick Perry by not filling out the census form.

    This plays right into the hands of Democrats. Why? Because both states, especially Texas, newly registered Democrats (from Mexico, India, China, etc.) are out pacing newly registered Republicans. And this bows well for 'new' Democratic Congressional districts.

    April 1, 2010 06:40 pm at 6:40 pm |
  11. Fed Up

    Conservatives always whine about the census and it's constitutionality (as if that issue hasn't been decided and settled sometime during the last 23 censuses).

    I think they just don't have the focus to put checks in 10 boxes and write their names.

    April 1, 2010 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  12. JonDie

    Most Republicans are illiterate. They'll need their liberal neighbor to help them fill out the forms. Shoot, Sarah Palin will probably need help to remember that AK is the abbreviation for Alaska.

    April 1, 2010 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  13. once upon a horse

    "otherwise well-meaning conservstives"? HAHAHAHAHA!! What an oxy-moron THAT is! Like Palin and Bachmann the latter of which said the census was "EVIL"!! The real well meaning conservatives that at one time did exist have been replaced by the sorry bunch that they have out there now.

    April 1, 2010 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  14. Michael from Ventura

    Oh what a tangled web they weave.....

    April 1, 2010 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  15. The GOP wants to take our country backwards

    Michelle Bachmann, the crazy woman who continually embarasses my home state of MN, claimed that the census was a government invasion of privacy and unconsitutional and that she, herself, would not complete it. Of course, when she realized that Minnesota might lose a congressional seat (most likely hers) she changed her tune real fast :)

    April 1, 2010 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  16. Sniffit

    "blatant misinformation" about the census "coming from otherwise well-meaning conservatives."

    That made me laugh so hard I peed a little.

    April 1, 2010 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  17. FRANK, LAS VEGAS

    I think everyone in Bachmann's district should do as she says, do not, do not fill out your census form, in fact throw it away. This nut case comes from the smallest district in MN and when her district doesn't fill out the census and MN has that many less citizens, hers is the district that will be eliminated and she'll be gone, out of a job, out of our lives! Go Michele, go!

    April 1, 2010 07:08 pm at 7:08 pm |
  18. Michael Mallon

    Neocon scum. Article 1, Section 3 of the US Constitution is explicit: only "Question 1" on the short form census being distributed this year is grounded in any Constitutional authority, as it is only "Question 1" that asks for any information the Federal government is authorized to collect from the People (and, for anyone whose intelligence is not insulted by "Question 2's" inane clarifications, feel free to answer that one, too). Questions 3 through 10 are unnecessarily invasive and not authorized by the Constitution; just because the Census Bureau via the Department of Commerce calls the whole thing a "census" doesn't mean we are required to answer their questions. Only the first question of ten is the "census."

    However, if you choose not to fill out the full form, expect multiple visits from census agents and you should also not be surprised if you are fined. But just because something is "against the law" doesn't mean it is unconstitutional. Standing up to these goons is literally the least a patriot can do for his or her country. Remember: an unjust law is not a law at all. It is an act of Congress.

    April 1, 2010 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  19. Kathleen

    That's right Republicans. Please do not send in your census.

    Just what the Republicans are urging their people to (not) do in order to make Obama appear bad.

    And it could hurt the Republicans not to send it in. Good! They need something to backfire on them.

    April 1, 2010 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |
  20. marie

    To me Republicans urging Americans not to fill out the census is just wrong. Millions of our tax dollars were spent on the census, and for crazies like Michelle Bachman to say it's wrong to fill it out should cost her the right to represent this country. Bachaman has also said that Americans shouldn't pay their taxes if health care passed. Isn't she as a congresswoman obligated to uphold the laws of this country, didn't she take an oath to uphold the constitution.

    April 1, 2010 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |
  21. george from alaska

    this is a typical example of the outlandish lies & misinformation constantly spread by "patriotic conservatives" aka republicans who are neither patriotic nor conservative. they are in reality simply bankers & oil company stooges that promote ideas like the "government is taking fingerprints for the census" (which has been spread primarily by nut job whacko holly roller republican worshiping churches). it serves them right if they don't participate in the census and lose even more of their bull manure fantasy tri-cornered hat world!

    April 1, 2010 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  22. LoveThyNeighbor

    I filled ours out for the Family and did not see any boxes that need checked as to your party affliation. Whats the deal? Democrat/Repub/Independent/green/str8/Gay/Male/Female/White/Black/african/Irish/Alien/Hispanic/Fat/Thin/Chubby/Huskie/Tall/Short/Petite/Married/Single/American Cacausion/American Indian/Etc...It does not matter! We are ALL human. Why all the sterotyping! Lets' ALL work together for a CHANGE!..Sam

    April 1, 2010 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  23. El Gordo

    Don't be fooled. If you fill out that census form, then the Communist-Liberal-Socialist-Lesbian-Atheist patrol will figure out where you live and you and your family will be transported to a death camp. This is where the death panel will interrogate you to see if you are a socialist (then you live) or a patriotic American (then you will be executed).

    April 1, 2010 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  24. dale

    Yes, it's a vast liberal, commie, pinko conspiracy just like your momma told you. Repubs are such idiots.

    April 1, 2010 08:08 pm at 8:08 pm |
  25. T'SAH from Virginia

    It is already PUBLICIZED – brought to you by CNN!!!! Too late!!!

    Everything these days are UNCONSTITUTIONAL – according to the RepubliCAN'Ts – Health Care and now the Census!!! What's next?

    April 1, 2010 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
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