A change primarily focuses on the 5,000-plus Utahns who are abroad serving as LDS missionaries at any given time. Utahns abroad serving in the military or working for the federal government are included in census counts, but missionaries are not.
Utah's population count in 2000 came up 857 residents short of that needed to win the state a fourth congressional seat 10 years ago — a seat that instead went to North Carolina. Adding expatriate missionaries into the count would have handily pushed the numbers past the threshold needed for the additional congressional seat. Utah sued in an attempt to effect a counting change then, but the challenge failed in the Supreme Court in 2002.