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Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

The Census Bureau has announced it will count prisoners as residents of the localities in which they are incarcerated rather than their home towns in the 2020 census. That's the bureau's longstanding practice, but advocates had hoped to push through a change.

Why it matters: Every 10 years, lawmakers use census data to draw proportional legislative and Congressional districts. Criminal justice reform advocates have long argued that counting prisoners who can't vote as residents of the towns where they’re incarcerated gives disproportionate representation to people who cast their ballots there. Only Maine and Vermont allow convicted felons to vote while in prison.

The two sides
  • The census notice: "Counting prisoners anywhere other than the facility would be less consistent with the concept of usual residence, since the majority of people in prisons live and sleep most of the time at the prison."
  • The opposition: "The Bureau’s decision is inconsistent with the way the ‘usual residence’ rule is applied to other similarly-situated people. The Census Bureau is picking favorites based on economic and racial privilege: if boarding school students are deemed to live at home, then the same logic should be applied to incarcerated people," Aleks Kajstura, legal director at the Prison Policy Initiative.

The bureau said in a notice on Wednesday that it had received 77,995 public comments in 2016 calling for an overhaul of the policy, and 4 opposing a change.

Quick facts: California, Delaware, Maryland and New York have passed laws mandating that prisoners be counted as residents of their home addresses, according to the Prison Policy Initiative, which has been advocating for an overhaul nationwide. Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie vetoed a bill last year to join that group. The Census Bureau has said it will work with states that want to opt out.

Go deeper

48 mins ago - World

German election: Exit polls show close race to succeed Angela Merkel

SPD leader Olaf Scholz. Photo: Alex Kraus/Bloomberg via Getty Images

BERLIN — The first exit poll from Sunday's German elections showed the center-left Social Democrats (SPD) and the center-right Christian Democrats (CDU) in a dead heat at 25%, leaving the race to succeed Angela Merkel too close to call.

The state of play: A second exit poll showed the SPD narrowly ahead. That's the one televisions displayed at SPD headquarters in Berlin, where the room erupted into cheers. Official results will roll in throughout the evening.

Abbott says he'll hire Border Patrol agents who whipped at migrants

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) on Sunday defended the actions of U.S. Border Patrol agents who charged at Haitian migrants on horseback, blaming the Biden administration for not preventing them from crossing the border.

Why it matters: Abbott's remark on "Fox News Sunday" comes amid increased backlash over the incident, with President Biden saying, "I promise... those people will pay,” and the Department of Homeland Security launching an investigation.

Everyone wants to be an influencer

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The number of people looking to become online influencers has exploded during the pandemic.

Why it matters: Almost anyone can find themselves in a position to become an influencer, and brands are throwing billions of dollars at online content creators.