NEWS13 July 2009

Senators push for vote on Obama’s Census nominee

Government News North America

US— The Democratic majority in the US Senate is hoping to force a vote on the confirmation of Bob Groves as director of the Census Bureau, after Republican senators blocked an earlier vote.

A cloture vote is planned for this afternoon, which needs the support of 60% of senators to set a 30-hour limit on further debate on the matter and force a vote.

Groves was selected by President Obama to lead the Census Bureau. His nomination has been approved by the Senate’s Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs.

Majority leader Harry Reid last month sought unanimous consent to proceed with Groves’ confirmation, but the Republican minority said the nomination had not been cleared by all senators.

The choice of Groves was controversial because he has in the past advocated the use of sampling to adjust results for sections of the population which tend to be undercounted – and which also tend to be Democrat voters.

However, Groves has highlighted the importance of an “objective, nonpartisan” Census Bureau, and has said that no sampling or statistical adjustment will be used in the 2010 count.