February 3, 2011

Latinos Changing the Political Map

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Hispanic voters are nearly three times more prevalent in states that gained congressional seats and Electoral College votes in the 2010 reapportionment than they are in states that lost seats.

Even before a single vote has been cast, Latinos are leaving their mark on the 2012 electoral map. Congressional reapportionment, following the 2010 Census, shifted congressional seats — and therefore Electoral College votes as well — among the states. In those that gained congressional seats (Texas, Florida, South Carolina, Georgia, Arizona, Utah, Nevada and Washington) Hispanic voters are nearly three times more prevalent than they are in states that lost seats (New York, Ohio, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Michigan, Iowa, Missouri and Louisiana), according to an analysis of Census data by the Pew Hispanic Center. Based on averages reflecting congressional gains and losses, 15.2% of the eligible voter population in states that gained seats is Hispanic, compared with just 5.4% of eligible voters in those states that lost seats. Based on 2009 population estimates, Hispanics have accounted for more than half (51%) of the population growth in the U.S. since 2000. But since many Hispanics are either too young to vote or not citizens, not all of their population growth is represented at the ballot box. A record 20.1 million Latinos were eligible to vote in 2009, but a great number were not eligible. Read More