Karl Rove appears in TV ad for Census
Author and former George W. Bush adviser Karl Rove will appear in a new public service announcement from the U.S. Census Bureau designed to convince people to mail back their 2010 census forms by the end of the month.
In an e-mail, Rove said he agreed to participate, "Because the Census settles apportionment of Congress and the current distrust of Washington should not discourage people from being counted."
His participation and subsequent comments come as some Republicans worry that anti-government sentiment will lead to lower census participation rates in conservative areas of the country, resulting in fewer Republican seats in Congress and state legislatures.
And just as Rove's PSA might help boost participation rates among conservatives, National Council of Negro Women President Dorothy Height also will appear in a new ad encouraging minorities to send back their forms. Several major cities with large black and Hispanic populations have seen lower participation rates thus far compared to 2000.
Rove's 30-second message (see above) focuses on the early beginnings of the census:
One of my favorite founders is James Madison, principal author of the Constitution. He created an instrument of democracy by writing into the Constitution a requirement for a census every 10 years to ensure fair representation in Congress.
If you've not yet mailed back your 2010 Census form, it's not too late. Please answer the 10 easy questions. They're almost the same ones that Madison helped write for the first census back in 1790.
The Census Bureau will offer the PSAs to broadcasters to air whenever they air such messages (usually during the daytime and late night hours). Though Census Day was last week, the agency will accept responses through the end of the month before it deploys census takers to conduct in-person interviews. It has also mailed a second round of forms to certain areas of the country in case people missed the first mailing.
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| April 5, 2010; 11:06 AM ET
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