My Two Census

Formerly the non-partisan watchdog of the 2010 US Census, and currently an opinion blog that covers all things political, media, foreign policy, globalization, and culture…but sometimes returning to its census/demographics roots.

Posts Tagged ‘Census director’

Live Blogging A Media Update From Census Director Robert M. Groves

Wednesday, September 23rd, 2009

9:51: I hope to have the full transcript of this press conference available soon.

9:50: I was able to fire off a question about the workers at Census Bureau processing facilities (Baltimore, Jeffersonville, Indiana, and Phoenix) and the type of screenings they undergo…stay tuned for more information on this subject in the near future. (Unfortunately my connection wasn’t so hot and Dr. Groves mentioned that he heard only every third word…)

9:40: OK – finally back on…Groves is discussing rural America and how to deal with the Census. I am in the que for questions – I will ask the following: What is your response to the IG’s report that ripped many parts of Census Bureau operations?

9:34: My line went dead. I’m back on now. Stephen Buckner is clarifying some questions now…come back…stupid conference call people arent listening to me and im stuck on hold. WHAT A SHITTY CONFERENCE CALL SERVICE! on hold for 3+ minutes for the 2nd time…great!

9:26: Some chick from FoxNews who sounds like an idiot is asking a question, “What will you tell the American people about your efforts to remain non-partisan?” – but she asks this in a DUMB DUMB DUMB way.

Groves doesn’t understand the question bc its a DUMB question. He maintains that this is apolitical. Groves notes that if he violates confidentiality he can go to prison for 5 years and pay 250k in a fine…i bet FoxNews runs away with that line.

9:23: Groves takes questions now. – Call cut out when question was asked… Running Census out of Washington DC alone doesn’t work. ACORN is just one of these groups. One of what will be 100,000. When one of our partners creates problems, we need to rethink this relationship. ACORN as a partner is impeding getting other partner agreements.

9:21: 4 changes for 2020 Census. 1. Use a master file 2. Internet reinterview study to test web vs. paper. 3. Match census records to administrative data bases acquired with other agencies. 4. large sample survey to measure quality of the census, he wants to improve this design to evaluate the process.

9:20: Groves wants to remain non-partisan. He wants to remain apolitical despite a ton of battles he must fight daily from people who want to get him involved in politics. There will be NOTHING on th einternet…if there is, its a scam.

9:15: A new team at the Bureau…Ken Prewitt and others brought in as consultants…key retirements could be problematic…for every 1% more people who return their Census form, you can save the federal government a ton of money.

9:09: Dr. Groves completed his personal transparency evaluation and he had a hearing yesterday on Capitol Hill to address this. He is happy with the 2010 Census design over the 2000 Census. He likes the short 10 question form. We learned in prior decades that long forms=bad as people are too busy. Sending bilingual questionnaires to targeted people…we will send replacement questionnaires when needed…improve massive address file…$1 billion in stimulus money given to the 2010 Census…this $$ used to improve access to small communities…

9:05: Dr. Groves is on the microphone…we are 6 months out, April 1, 2010 is looming ahead of us. He explains address canvassing process…Opening 500 local census offices throughout the country…last stages of our work are supervised, trained…everything is on schedule…we are printing questionnaires…printing 183,000,000 questionaires plus 15,000,000 bilingual questionnaires….using much of printing capacity of the usa, three large processing centers open: jeffersonville indiana, baltimore, and phoenix for scanning and scanning electronic data. this is going pretty well….we are in the middle of opening up call centers for assistance when people need it…first stages in the communications campaign…things are looking good…

9:04: Stephen Buckner, communications/PR  spokesman, is on the line…He announces that this is the first of many press conferences.

9:00:  Still waiting to get this show on a road…I’m sitting at a cafe in Copenhagen right now so it could be worse. However, I do wish I was at the National Press Club.

8:57:  I have been logged into the conference call and I am listening to classical music waiting for Dr. Groves to begin his briefing.


What:    U.S. Census Bureau Director Dr. Robert M. Groves will brief the media on the status of 2010 Census operations. Since taking the
helm of the Census Bureau in July, Groves has studied and
evaluated the key components of the national once-a-decade count.
He will provide an assessment of the internal and external
challenges facing the 2010 Census and the Census Bureau’s
readiness to meet them. He will take questions from media in

When:    Wednesday, Sept. 23, 9 – 10 a.m. (EDT)

Who:     Dr. Robert M. Groves, director, U.S. Census Bureau

Where:   National Press Club, 13th floor
Fourth Estate Restaurant
529 14th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20045

Congratulations and Praise for Robert M. Groves from Democrats and Republicans

Monday, July 13th, 2009


CONTACT: Bette Phelan (202) 224-2441



Sen. Tom Carper Encouraged Colleagues to Give Up Holds and Vote on Nomination

WASHINGTON (July 13, 2009) – Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.) today applauded the confirmation of Dr. Robert Groves as director of the United States Census Bureau.

As chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on Federal Financial Management, Government Information, Federal Services and International Security, Sen. Carper has been a key player in conducting Dr. Groves’ confirmation hearing, and in encouraging his colleagues to allow for his final confirmation vote today.

“Finally, less than six months before the first surveys go out nationwide for the decennial census, the Census Bureau will have the kind of leadership it needs in the form of newly confirmed director Dr. Groves,” said Sen. Carper. “I encourage Dr. Groves to get right to work, and I know that under his leadership we can address the serious challenges that could jeopardize the success and cost-effectiveness of the 2010 Census.”

At Dr. Groves’ confirmation hearing in May, as well as chairing several other hearings on progress of the 2010 Census, on the Senate floor today, Sen. Carper has stressed the importance of having an accurate, efficient and cost-effective count in 2010.

The results of the 2010 Census will affect everything from the apportionment of seats in the U.S. House of Representatives to the allocation of hundreds of billions of dollars in federal assistance to state and local governments.

The cost of the 2010 Census has escalated to an estimated $14 billion, making it the most expensive census in history, by far. It will cost the nation an estimated $100 to count each household in 2010, compared to $56 in 2000 and $13 in 1970.


Sen. Carper speaks on the floor late Monday evening about Dr. Robert Groves’ confirmation.


TOMORROW, WEDNESDAY, July 14, 2009 at 10:00am – 10:05am EDT

Press Release
July 13, 2009 Phone: (202) 225-2576

McHenry Congratulates Groves on Confirmation as Census Director

WASHINGTON – Congressman Patrick McHenry (NC-10), Ranking Member on the House Subcommittee on Information Policy, Census, and National Archives, released the following statement in response to the confirmation of Dr. Robert Groves as Director of the U.S. Census Bureau.

“I congratulate Dr. Groves on his confirmation as our next Census Director.  Because of his past support of manipulating census results, Dr. Groves would not have been my first choice for the position.  However, having ruled out the use of statistical adjustment, I believe Dr. Groves is well positioned and well qualified to lead an accurate and successful 2010 Decennial.  I look forward to working with Dr. Groves to ensure that Congress meets its obligations to provide vigorous and constructive oversight of the Bureau’s operations.”


Robert M. Groves’ Senate questionnaire

Thursday, May 7th, 2009

The Associated Press obtained a copy of Census Director-to-be Robert M. Groves’ 41-page questionnaire that was required in preparation for his upcoming Senate confirmation hearing. MyTwoCensus has made requests to obtain this document so that we may analyze it in full. For now, here are the most interesting tidbits:

1. Groves defended his push for statistical sampling in the 1990 census to make up for an undercount of millions of mostly minorities, who tend to vote for Democrats — a move that was then decried by the Republican commerce secretary as political tampering.

2. While Groves said the use of sampling in 2010 was unlikely given the little time remaining, he would not say whether he would support other measures such as a government halt to immigration raids. “I will work with all agencies of government to assure the best census this country can achieve,” Groves wrote when asked if he would seek to scale back enforcement.

3. On matters of science, Groves was unequivocal. “The White House can have no role,” he said. “If the director is perceived to be a pawn of one or another political ideological perspective, the credibility of the statistical system is threatened.”

4. Groves said if he encounters undue partisan interference from the White House or elsewhere that he cannot resist, “I will resign and work outside the system to stop the abuse.”

5. In his questionnaire, Groves cast the Census Bureau as woefully outdated, saying it lacks scientific talent due to a recent and upcoming wave of retirements.

6. In his questionnaire, Groves acknowledged he lacked extensive management experience to run the bureau’s sprawling operations but said he was up to the task.