The Complete Census Count Committee is a five-member committee of volunteers appointed by Galveston’s City Council to encourage businesses, nonprofits, educational institutions and everyday, ordinary residents to help count every living soul in the city limits for purposes of ensuring our census count is as complete as it can be.

Our comments in these commentaries, which we will submit weekly, are intended to help everyone understand the importance of a complete count.

Some have suggested we should focus less on recovering the taxes we pay and more on our allocation of representation in the state legislature and Congress. The two are inextricably linked. Those chosen to represent us in legislative bodies are, in effect, trustees of the taxes we pay and are charged with allocating those funds in a fair and equitable manner.

The committee’s concern with lost revenue relates to ensuring the population that pays those taxes and that should receive the benefit from those taxes is accurately represented in both the allocation of decision makers and the dollars those decision makers control.

Results of the census count will guide the allocation of funding for more than 55 federal programs ranging from highway planning and construction to the National School Lunch Program.

As a former member of the Texas House of Representatives who worked primarily on health care coverage issues, I’m especially concerned with the impact of an undercount on Medicaid, the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) and other programs that provide coverage for those who cannot afford private health insurance coverage.

Recent studies by Georgetown University tell us that, in Galveston County, these programs cover almost one-third of our children 18 and younger. A short count means that many Galveston children will not have access to the kind of care that focuses on keeping them healthy, as well as taking care of them when they’re sick.

In addition, the CHIP Perinate program covers essential prenatal care to women who are ineligible for Medicaid but lack private insurance coverage, and the Title V Maternal and Child Health program provides some coverage for children, adolescents, and pregnant women who are ineligible for Medicaid, CHIP, or CHIP Perinate coverage.

Access to preventive care, health maintenance and wellness, as well as coverage when we’re sick is critical when we consider the impacts of responding to either widespread disease outbreak such as we’re seeing with the coronavirus now or what we consider more common disease outbreaks such as the increased flu cases we’ve seen this year.

The committee isn’t charged with defending or advocating for any specific taxpayer supported program. Our only concerns are that we’re able to choose as many representatives as we’re entitled to and that, to the extent those representatives have the responsibility to allocate dispersal of the taxes we pay, we get our share back to spend in our community.

Help us have a complete count. Say yes to the 2020 census.

Patricia Gray represented Galveston County in the Texas House of Representatives from 1992 to 2003. She has resided in Galveston for more than 40 years.


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(39) comments

Ray Taft

Hopefully, Galveston Democrats, like Patrica Gray, can accurately count residents a whole lot better than Democrats counted votes in their Iowa Caucus fiasco.

And even more hopefully, the state is making sure the Democrats don’t count illegals as legal residents. Democrats love illegals much more than American citizens, so they may try to cheat.

Craig Mason

what is wrong with you?

Ray Taft


Craig Mason

The article was about the importance of an accurate count and you go off on a political rant. The benefits to us outweigh the negatives for sure. The article seemed apolitical to me. But hey maybe you have had a head injury, or something I am not aware of. If that is the case I apologize.

Paul Hyatt

I agree.... Democrats love the illegals far more than they love actual citizens or the veterans of this nation!

Mike Zeller

The U.S. Constitution requires that every “person” be counted. You gotta watch those Republicans, they only like to count people that look and think like them.

Ray Taft

Lol. It’s Democrats who can’t even count themselves as revealed by the Dems’ Iowa Caucus fiasco.

Jim Forsythe

The Census Count is has nothing to with Caucus's.

Republican's Iowa Caucus fiasco.

Republican's who can’t even count themselves as revealed by the Republican Iowa Caucus fiasco.

In 2012, Mitt Romney was named the winner of the Republican caucus by eight votes, only to have the party determine 16 days later that former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum had finished in first by 34 votes.

Until states changes away from caucus's, problems will continue to happen.

More problems may happen in caucus's as Nevada, Alaska, Colorado, Minnesota, North Dakota, Washington, Hawaii, Maine, Kansas, Nebraska, Wyoming, Louisiana, Montana and Idaho and the District of Columbia caucus's are yet to come.

Carlos Ponce

"Romney Wins Iowa Caucus by 8 Votes" That was the headline in the New York Times and Des Moines Register submitted on January 4, 2012 at 1:33 am, three minutes after Mitt Romney claimed victory based on UNOFFICIAL RESULTS. Had they waited a few minutes.....

Jim Forsythe

2012 Iowa GOP caucus date, January 3, 2012, Tuesday

Romney was ahead by 51 votes the weekend after the caucuses , Olsen (Iowa GOP) said

On the campaign trail in South Carolina on Friday, Santorum crowed that he might have won Iowa.

Meanwhile in Iowa, the counting grew more complicated.

More than 100 of the Form Es didn’t comply with the party’s instructions.

The precinct chair and precinct secretary were both to sign the results verified by witnesses on caucus night. But results for some precincts came in on pieces of paper other than the official forms. Many more had only one signature, or the wrong signature (say, from a county chair). Another 18 documents had no signatures at all.

Carlos Ponce

Depends on your source, Jim Cedar Rapids Gazette called the race a toss up and a seesaw battle on Jan 4, Jan 5, Jan 6, etc.

Carlos Ponce

"The U.S. Constitution requires that every 'person' be counted." Not quite, Excluded from the Census are "Citizens of foreign countries temporarily traveling or visiting in the U.S." But the Supreme Court in Evenwel v. Abbott (2016) extended the census count to include illegals.

Included are "Citizens of foreign countries who have established a household or are part of an established household in the U.S. while working or studying, including family members with them. And citizens of foreign countries who are living in the U.S. at embassies, ministries, legations, or consulates."

Realistically, most illegals exclude themselves from census counts. "¡NO, si saben dónde vivo, vendrán por mí! ¡No participaré en el censo!"

Jim Forsythe

The Census Act of 1790 required U.S. marshals to take an oath to “truly cause to be made a just and perfect enumeration and description of all persons resident within [their] districts, regardless of legal status

Following more than seven months of debate, Congress adopted the Fourteenth Amendment, insisting that total population, not voter population, was the basis for our Constitution’s system of representation. “As the Framers of the Constitution and the Fourteenth Amendment comprehended, representatives serve all residents, not just those eligible or registered to vote.” The Fourteenth Amendment, which was approved by the people and became a part of the Constitution in 1868, reaffirmed that our Constitution’s system of equal representation for all depends on a count of the nation’s entire population, including non-citizens. As this history shows, the purpose of the census required by the Constitution has never been to count just citizens, but rather to count “the whole body of the people.

Ray Taft

Any count is in jeopardy if Democrats do it. They can’t even fairly count their own people. The Dems’ Iowa Caucus shows that.

Buttigieg walked away with the majority of delegates despite Bernie winning the majority of voters.

Bailey Jones

"Buttigieg walked away with the majority of delegates despite Bernie winning the majority of voters." - I hate when that happens, it really calls into question the legitimacy of the "winner".

Carlos Ponce

Same thing happened in 2016. "Hillary walked away with the majority of delegates despite Bernie winning the majority of voters." But It's your party and you'll cry if you want to.....

Jim Forsythe

The reason Hillary won 23 Delegates to Sanders 21 was because she won the vote, 49.8% to Sanders 49.6%

Hillary Clinton was able to defeat Bernie Sanders in the Iowa Caucus by the closest margin : 49.8% to 49.6% (Clinton collected 700.47 state delegate equivalents to Sanders' 696.92, a difference of one quarter of a percentage point).

Carlos Ponce

"The reason Hillary won 23 Delegates to Sanders 21 was because she won the vote, 49.8% to Sanders 49.6%" Another example of Democrat Animal Farm math. All Democrats are equal but some Democrats are more equal than others.

Bailey Jones

I was actually thinking about the electoral college, Carlos - another mechanism were the popular vote doesn't always guarantee a victory.

Carlos Ponce

It's Constitutional, Bailey. And it's there for a reason - and it gives us is in "fly over country" a voice.

Jim Forsythe


Unless math rules have changed 49.8% is larger then 49.6%.

Bailey Jones

With 37 electoral votes,Texas is hardly "flyover country", Carlos. The reason candidates ignore Texas after the primary is because it's so solidly red - there's literally zero return on investment. Switch to a proportional method of awarding electoral votes and they'll come running.

Carlos Ponce

Jim , Hillary won 23 Delegates to Sanders 21. The MINOR percentage difference indicates an even split, not one person get two more. But it's your party.....

Carlos Ponce

"With 37 electoral votes,Texas is hardly 'flyover country' " Galveston County would be considered "fly over country". Candidates would concentrate on only promising things for the big cities - Houston, DFW, San Antonio in Texas, New York, Chicago, LA, etc.

Jim Forsythe

. No-one had a majority. As Buttigieg won the vote 26.21% to Sanders 26.12% was the reason that he was awarded one more delegate than Sanders.

Total of Delegates in Iowa.---

Pete Buttigieg 13 , Sanders 12, Warren 8, Biden 6, Klobuchar 1

Carlos Ponce

"No-one had a majority" so Buttigieg gets one more delegate than Bernie. [unsure]

Jim Forsythe

Yes because Buttigieg won the vote 26.21% to Sanders 26.12%

Jim Forsythe

Carlos, are you saying a person should win if they get the most votes?

Carlos Ponce

A person should win the presidency if they get the most number of Electoral votes. Those are the rules. A person should win according to the rules. If the rules say majority of popular votes then a person must win the majority.It the rules say a plurality then the person must have the most votes if there are more than two in competition.

Jim Forsythe

Carlos, it looks like you do not understand how the Democrat's ran the Iowa Caucus.

Iowa has a total of 49 delegates and 4 alternates

Satellite Caucus are also part of the process.

You can win the popular vote, without winning the most delegates.

Delegates are chosen by 6 polity units (4 congressional districts, 1 at large, and 1 PLEO) where delegates are allocated. Most of these units have an odd number of allocations.

The ultimate difference is who can compete in every caucus, not necessarily have a majority, but just enough to etch out a delegate or two at every place.

Carlos Ponce

"You can win the popular vote, without winning the most delegates."

It's your party. Still sounds wrong.

Jim Forsythe

"You can win the popular vote, without winning the most delegates." Just like the Electoral College.

I do not belong to the Iowa Democrat's. They are the ones that set the rules for Iowa caucus's .

Jim Forsythe

Carlos you do know the Republican Caucus Rules allow for a candidate to win the popular vote not win the most delegates. Since you think it is wrong for the Democrats to award delegates in this manor, is it wrong for the Republican's to do the same?

Republican Caucus Rules & Candidates:The rules for the Republican caucus are quite a bit simpler than the rules for the Democratic caucus. The precinct caucuses will proportionally allocate delegates to the county conventions based on the vote. The county conventions will then choose delegates for the district and state conventions. Iowa has 12 delegates attending the Republican National Convention.

For caucus day itself, Republicans cast a vote for the candidate they prefer. The votes are all counted and the precinct chair announces how many delegates were elected by the precinct. The delegates are allotted proportionally, as this is not a winner-takes-all state. So as you can see, it’s a lot simpler. In the Democratic caucus, people line up in sections of the room based on their preferred candidate, and then only groups with 15% or more of the vote in their precinct can consider their vote counted. The “nonviable” supporters have an option to then realign and vote for a viable candidate in the second election.

Carlos Ponce

We don't have a caucus in Texas so does it really matter?

Carlos Ponce

Party members do meet after the primary in Texas but it's not the same as in Iowa.

Jim Forsythe

"We don't have a caucus in Texas so does it really matter?" It did to you, until I pointed out the Republicans use the same method the Democrat's do.

I know about caucus, because I grow up in Kansas, and know how they work. Every four years, there’s was always uncertainty about where to go and what to do.

Carlos Ponce

Jim, you're not in Kansas any more.

Carlos Ponce

"the whole body of the people" with exceptions.

Ted Gillis

Patty, see what happens when you try to start civil conversation.

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