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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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Ada County, Idaho

According to the 2000 Census, Ada County, Idaho has a population of 300,904 people. Of those, 279,427 (93%) are White, 1,942 (0%) are Black, and 13,467 (4%) are Latino[1]. However, 3,848 (or 1% of the 300,904 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 Ada County a population of 297,056 with a demographic that is 93% White, 1% Black, and 4% Latino.

Reported in
Census 2000
Total 300,904 3,848 297,056
White 279,427 3,567 275,860
Black 1,942 75 1,867
Latino 13,467 579 12,888


[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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