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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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Hidalgo County, New Mexico

According to the 2000 Census, Hidalgo County, New Mexico has a population of 5,932 people. Of those, 4,970 (80%) are White, 24 (480%) are Black, and 3,324 (60%) are Latino[1]. However, 30 (or 1% of the 5,932 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 Hidalgo County a population of 5,902 with a demographic that is 84% White, 0% Black, and 56% Latino.

Reported in
Census 2000
Incarcerated
population
Actual
population
Total 5,932 30 5,902
White 4,970 28 4,942
Black 24 0 24
Latino 3,324 20 3,304


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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