Census advertising doesn’t appear to be working as planned

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Mike Riggs
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      Mike Riggs

      Mike Riggs is a staff writer at The Daily Caller. He has written and reported for Reason magazine and reason.com, GQ, the Awl, Decibel, Culture 11, the Philadelphia Bulletin, and the Washington City Paper, where he served as an arts and entertainment editor.

According to the Census participation tracker, only 20 percent of Census forms mailed to occupied homes have been returned. The deadline isn’t for another week (April 1), but 2o percent is still pretty low considering that Director Robert Groves says “a lot” of homes received their forms between March 15 and March 17, and that Census recipients who don’t fill out their forms immediately are less likely to return them at all.

Southern states, whether due to large Hispanic populations or lower population density, have low response rates across the board; but Rustbelt states, where the Census is being marketed as a means for increasing entitlement spending, have much higher than average response rates.

Of the 10 states with the highest home foreclosure rates, only Georgia, Nevada, Florida, Texas, and California have below average Census participation rates. On the one hand, that’s almost half. Then again, the other five states have much higher than average response rates (four of them are also located in the Rustbelt).

Patterns aside, I’m interested to see what sort of data the Census Bureau has collected from its ad campaign.

  • windrdr

    20% – isn’t that somewhat close to the figure for the poll response rate for thinking the government still has the consent of the governed? Interesting.

  • ohthehugemanatee

    Egads! There’s a shocker!