Maybe Minnesota didn’t deserve to keep its eight congressional seats after all.
The state barely hung onto all of its congressional seats in the 2010 Census, but an Associated Press report Tuesday says that North Carolina has reason to argue they should have been given the 435th and final seat that went to Minnesota.
The AP reports that more than 40,000 troops were deployed from North Carolina’s military bases last year, but only 12,200 of them listed North Carolina on the Census — a discrepancy of 28,000 people.
Had North Carolina counted about 15,000 more people, it would have taken the final congressional seat away from Minnesota.
The undercount involves a dispute over counting troops in their home state versus the base where they live.
Fortunately for Minnesota (and unfortunately for North Carolina), there appears to be no recourse to challenge the Census count for congressional seats, though the AP reports the North Carolina governor’s office hopes to change the policy for the 2020 count.
This isn’t the first time the issue has come up. From the AP story:
Massachusetts claimed after the 1990 Census that the policy improperly cost the state a seat in Congress, but the Supreme Court rejected the state's legal challenge, determining the home state assignment was compatible with the Census policy of identifying each person's "usual residence."