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US electoral map gives Hispanics more heft: study

By Agence France-Presse
Thursday, January 6, 2011 7:35 EDT
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The new electoral map that emerged from the 2010 US census favors Hispanics, the largest US minority group, as some states in which they live will win more representation in Congress, a study found Wednesday.

States with growing populations such as Texas and Florida will pick up extra congressional seats, while some northern states such as Ohio and Iowa are set to lose seats under a redistricting system ahead of the 2012 elections.

The study by the Pew Hispanic Center found that Hispanic voters are almost three times more numerous in those states that will pick up congressional seats and electoral college votes, than in states that will have to shed seats.

While 15.2 percent of eligible voters — those US citizens over 18 — are Hispanics in states that increased their political influence, they account for only 5.4 percent of the electorate in states that lost electoral heft, it said.

For example, Florida will pick up two seats and Nevada will gain one; both are states that played an important role in the 2008 presidential vote and in the November mid-term elections.

The 2010 census — a national one is held once every 10 years — counted 308 million Americans, up nine percent from a decade earlier. More than 51 percent of the growth was among Hispanics.

Of the 48.4 million Hispanics, 20.1 million are currently eligible to vote.

Agence France-Presse
Agence France-Presse
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