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Prison gerrymandering gives extra political power to legislators who have prisons in their districts. We put numbers on the problem and sparked a movement to protect our democratic process from the overgrown prison system.

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Fulton County, Illinois

According to the 2000 Census, Fulton County, Illinois has a population of 38,250 people. Of those, 36,384 (95%) are White, 1,378 (3%) are Black, and 478 (1%) are Latino[1]. However, 1,973 (or 5% of the 38,250 people) are not residents by choice but are people in prison.

Even though prisoners cannot participate in the local community, the Census Bureau nevertheless counts them as residents of the county where they are incarcerated.

A more accurate description would not include the prisoners. This would give Fulton County a population of 36,277 with a demographic that is 98% White, 0% Black, and 1% Latino.

Reported in
Census 2000
Incarcerated
population
Actual
population
Total 38,250 1,973 36,277
White 36,384 673 35,711
Black 1,378 1,250 128
Latino 478 231 247


Notes:

[1]The numbers for Whites, Blacks and Latinos may not add up to the total number because we have not included racial groups other than Whites and Blacks and because the Census Bureau considers "Latino" to be an ethnicity, not a race. Most of the people reported as being Latino are also counted as being White or Black.

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