The Web site of Representative Daniel Webster, Republican of Florida, instructs visitors to click on a link for “Census data for the 8th district” to learn about the area’s economy, businesses, income, employment, homeownership and other important features. And yet, on Wednesday, Mr. Webster declared that the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey — the source for much of that data — is an unconstitutional breach of privacy.He then proposed an amendment to the bureau’s 2013 appropriation to forbid any money from being spent on the survey; the amendment was passed by most House Republicans and four Democrats.As I pointed out to my own congressman, the cry throughout the nation is to create more jobs, but to do that businesses need information. The census, of which the American Community Survey is an integral part, is our main source of information about the United States. Without that information, we are truly walking in the dark.
When Republicans proposed similar cuts last year, even the deficit hawks at the United States Chamber of Commerce opposed them.
The White House is opposed to the cuts and the Senate will soon have a chance to reject them when it takes up the appropriation bill. It should.
But let's not just hope that will happen. Contact your senators and push the case.