Senator blames illegal immigrants for his state's Census woes

Louisiana Sen. David Vitter (R) blamed illegal immigrants for his state losing a congressional seat in the Census Bureau's reapportionment. 

Vitter said Louisiana lost a seat because other states were welcoming of illegal immigrants, who were in turn counted in population totals used to determine the number of seats in Congress each state is allowed in the next 10 years.

"Last year, I tried to prevent this from happening with my amendment to require a citizenship question on the census and to prevent the counting of illegal immigrants for the purpose of apportionment,” Vitter said in a statement.

“Now, Louisiana stands to lose clout in Congress, while states that welcome illegal immigrants stand to unfairly benefit from artificially inflated population totals," he added.

Republicans are generally seen as the benefactors of the reapportionment. A number of GOP-leaning states picked up seats, while states President Obama lost in the 2008 presidential election largely lost seats. States ultimately redraw the congressional district lines in their state, typically either through the legislature or bipartisan commissions.

Census directors acknowledged at their press conference Tuesday that the reapportionment numbers take into account the total population of each state, regardless of each resident's legal status.

Vitter, as his statement had referenced, had sought to advance an amendment last year that would have forbidden counting illegal immigrants in the Census for reapportionment purposes.