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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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Dona Ana County, New Mexico

According to the 2000 Census, Dona Ana County, New Mexico has a population of 174,682 people. Of those, 118,478 (68%) are White, 2,723 (1%) are Black, and 110,665 (63%) are Latino[1]. However, 1,658 (or 1% of the 174,682 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 Dona Ana County a population of 173,024 with a demographic that is 68% White, 2% Black, and 63% Latino.

Reported in
Census 2000
Incarcerated
population
Actual
population
Total 174,682 1,658 173,024
White 118,478 1,364 117,114
Black 2,723 102 2,621
Latino 110,665 1,201 109,464


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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