Next year, the U.S. Census Bureau is planning to launch its first-ever "field test" of a 2020 census form that includes the controversial citizenship question added by the Trump administration: "Is this person a citizen of the United States?"

The bureau is interested in knowing how that question may affect responses to the upcoming national headcount.

Beginning in June 2019, about 480,000 households are expected to receive one of two test questionnaires similar to the form the bureau is planning to use in 2020. Some of the forms used in the test will include the question, "Is this person a citizen of the United States?"

The bureau expects to receive results by fall 2019. That's just months before the headcount is expected to begin in January 2020 in rural Alaska before rolling out to the rest of the country starting in March 2020.

The U.S. Census Bureau has to decide whether to hire more door knockers to visit households that don't respond and adapt its marketing campaign for the census because of any negative impact from the citizenship question. The U.S. Supreme Court plans on hearing arguments concerning the Census citizenship question.

But before that happens, I'll answer it. I don't see why our nation should be denied the answer to the quintessential question.

Phil Paleologos is the host of The Phil Paleologos Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. Contact him at and follow him on Twitter @PhilPaleologos. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.

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