The Census Bureau will release data on Thursday from the 2020 census that states will use to draw congressional and state legislative districts for the next decade, marking the start of what will be a fierce partisan battle over redistricting.
Demographers also expect the data to show that the country’s white population is declining for the first time in history, with people of color representing virtually all population growth.
The release will arrive months later than originally expected after the census took longer to complete due to the coronavirus pandemic. The delay has forced some states to go to court to postpone their redistricting deadlines.
States use the data to redraw district lines for the House of Representatives after each decennial census, based on where people now reside.
In April, the bureau published state-level figures, showing that Texas, Florida and North Carolina – all states controlled by Republicans – will gain congressional seats next year based on increased populations.
Electoral analysts have said Republicans could potentially erase the Democrats’ thin advantage in the House through redistricting alone.
Thursday’s more detailed data will show how and where the country’s white, Black, Hispanic and Asian communities grew.