The fight over illegal immigration and stopping the flow of migrants into the United States is about who will control the House of Representatives for decades.

There will be two major political and societal events for the United States of America in 2020. One will be the election for the presidency and the other will be the national census.

The next president will be elected by the Electoral College based on the results of the individual elections in the 50 states. The folks participating in the state elections will be the American citizens (mostly) who first register to vote and then decide to participate in the election by casting a ballot. There are 538 electors who vote for the president every four years. The number of electors is divided up among the states according to how many members they have in their combined U.S. House and Senate delegation. Massachusetts has 11 electors based on two Senators and nine Representatives. California has 55 votes in the Electoral College.

The U.S. Census is mandated by the Constitution to be conducted every 10 years. The census counts the population of the entire country and those results are used to apportion the 438 seats in the House of Representatives until the next census results a decade later. The seats are allocated to each state and the state legislatures then draw up the individual Congressional districts in their domain.

The number of Congressional seats is fixed at 438. For a state to gain a member of Congress, another state must lose a member of Congress. Massachusetts lost a member of Congress in the last apportionment and Rhode Island is likely going to lose one this time around. The loss is a serious blow to the power of a state and to the political party that dominates that state.

The state that loses a seat in Congress also loses a vote in the Electoral College and falls further down the ladder of influence in Washington. Presidents and those wanting to be president pay attention to the Electoral College map and act accordingly.

The only people who count (assuming no fraud) on election day are the American citizens who cast a ballot. However, that is not the case when it comes to the census. Everyone residing in a state is counted towards the population of the state for the purpose of deciding how many members of the House the state will get from a total of 438 seats.

Illegal aliens count towards the state population. The more illegal aliens a state has, the more seats in Congress the state will get.

This is the real reason some are fighting so hard to stop the president from securing our borders.

Chris McCarthy is the host of The Chris McCarthy Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from 10 a.m. to noon. Contact him at and follow him on Twitter @Chris_topher_Mc. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author. 

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