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    Illinois, Mississippi and West Virginia were the only states in the nation to see population declines in the last decade according to new apportionment data from the U.S. Census Bureau.

    The U.S. Census Bureau on Monday released federal apportionment data indicating Illinois will lose one of its 18 congressional seats, prompting relief among state leaders who feared a second seat could be in the offing.

    The announcement, which had been expected for months given steady declines in the state’s population, adds yet another factor for state lawmakers to consider as they hold their final legislative hearings in the leadup to the remap.

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