Local officials in Montana are warning constituents about a Republican National Committee survey asking for funds for the president's reelection campaign that mirrors a federal Census form.
Residents in a handful of Montanan counties have received the "Imitation Census" this year labeled as "2019 congressional District Census," according to a release from the state's Census and Economic Information Center at the Department of Commerce. The mailer states recipients were "selected to represent voters."
The mailer requests donations of at least $15 to "help pay for the costs of processing [the] Census Document."
The Department of Commerce's release reminded residents that the federal census "will never ask respondents for money, and those surveys will always be postmarked from the U.S. Department of Commerce, U.S. Census Bureau."
The mailers contained a letter from RNC Chair Ronna McDanielRonna Romney McDanielRNC pushes back against call for chair's resignation over LGBT outreach Conservatives praise Rittenhouse jury verdict RNC chair contradicts Trump: 'Biden won the election' MORE that says the president asked for a Census of every congressional district to secure his reelection. The survey includes questions asking about confidence in the country's economy, support of Trump's appointing of judges and thoughts on whether climate change is a "major threat," the Washington Post reported.
Lt. Governor Mike Cooney said in the release that his residents need to have clear information about the Census because of its importance to potentially getting the state more funding and another House representative.
“An accurate and complete Census count for Montana is too important to take lightly,” he said.
An RNC official told The Hill that the mailers clearly say they are from the RNC.
"The mailers receive an overwhelming positive response and we continue to send each year because it performs so well," the official said.
The Census is conducted every 10 years and is due to be completed for 2020. Trump's administration's recent push to add a question about U.S. citizenship on the Census was not successful.