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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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Charleston County, South Carolina

According to the 2000 Census, Charleston County, South Carolina has a population of 309,969 people. Of those, 191,928 (62%) are White, 106,918 (34%) are Black, and 7,434 (2%) are Latino[1]. However, 1,670 (or 1% of the 309,969 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 Charleston County a population of 308,299 with a demographic that is 62% White, 34% Black, and 2% Latino.

Reported in
Census 2000
Total 309,969 1,670 308,299
White 191,928 383 191,545
Black 106,918 1,262 105,656
Latino 7,434 29 7,405


[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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