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Counting Those Who Count: The Impact of Latino Population Growth on Redistricting in Southern States

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  28 June 2011

J. Salvador Peralta
Affiliation:
University of West Georgia
George R. Larkin
Affiliation:
Walden University
Corresponding

Abstract

The purpose of this article is to examine the potential impact of Hispanics on the electoral geography of the southern United States after the 2010 decennial census. Hispanics are the largest and fastest-growing minority group in the United States today. In addition to traditional Hispanic destinations such as Florida and Texas, many of the areas experiencing the most rapid growth in Hispanic population are southern states such as Georgia, North Carolina, and Virginia. Geographic information systems are used to determine where majority-minority and influential districts are likely to emerge in southern states. We argue that although the Latino population has increased significantly over the past decade, the proportion of Latinos living in southern states remains relatively low in comparison to the general population. Therefore, no new majority-minority or influence districts will emerge in Louisiana, Mississippi, or Tennessee. Majority-minority and influence districts are likely to emerge in Arkansas, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia at the state and local levels, but not at the U.S. congressional level. Texas and Florida are the only southern states where new majority-minority and influence districts are likely to emerge at the U.S., state, and local levels after the 2010 decennial census.

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Features
Copyright
Copyright © American Political Science Association 2011

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