Arizona misses out on additional congressional seat after 2020 Census

Apr 26, 2021, 1:19 PM | Updated: 9:02 pm
(Flickr/Gage Skidmore)...
(Flickr/Gage Skidmore)
(Flickr/Gage Skidmore)

PHOENIX — Despite being one of the fastest-growing states, the Census Bureau revealed Monday that Arizona would not receive an additional congressional seat based on the results of the 2020 count.

Arizona’s population jumped to 7,151,502 in 2020 from 6,392,017 in 2010, but fell short of adding a 10th seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. It was the first time since the 1950 Census that the Grand Canyon State didn’t gain a seat.

Census Bureau officials said Arizona was ranked No. 440 to receive another seat, five spots away from the cutoff.

“This is absolutely a shocker,” political analyst Mike O’Neil told KTAR News 92.3 FM. “This was unexpected completely.”

The U.S. population rose to 331,449,281, the Census Bureau said, a 7.4% increase that was the second-slowest ever over the 10-year period.

Colorado, Montana and Oregon all added residents and gained seats. Texas was the biggest winner — the second-most populous state added two congressional seats, while Florida and North Carolina gained one. States losing seats included Illinois, Michigan, Pennsylvania and West Virginia.

The count, which must happen every 10 years under the U.S. Constitution, was complicated by safety measures during the COVID-19 pandemic, such as the need for social distancing, and by last-minute litigation over efforts by President Donald Trump’s administration to include a question on citizenship.

The Census Bureau released only basic data Monday. The neighborhood-level numbers that will be used to draw new legislative and congressional district boundaries won’t be released until late summer or the fall.

The maps will be approved by the Independent Redistricting Commission, comprised of two Democrats, two Republicans and an independent voter.

KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Peter Samore and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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