How many phantom voters are there in Washington State and who are they helping? Note I did not say voting for, but helping. Seems that in New York State, non-voting prisoners have helped to give Republicans an advantage in increasing their clout. The reason has to do with the fact that the US Census, used for determine population for drawing boundaries of national and state races, lists prisoners under where they are incarcerated, not where they lived before.
In an editorial in today’s NY Times entitled “Phantom Voters, Thanks to the Census“they note:
A startling analysis by Peter Wagner of the Prison Policy Institute found that seven upstate New York Senate Districts meeting the population requirements only because inmates were included in the count. The Republican Party in New York relies on its large upstate delegation for its majority in the State Senate – and for its political power statewide. New York is not alone. The Prison Policy Initiative’s researchers found 21 counties nationally where at least 21 percent of so-called residents lived behind bars.
A national map located at http://www.prisonersofthecensus.org/ website has colored areas in Washington state affected by this misuse of phantom voters. These include the prisons located in Walla Walla, Mason, and Chelan counties. In addition to distorting one person, one vote, the prison population figures in the census severely distort racial makeup in census data.http://prisonersofthecensus.org/news/fact-3-5-2004.shtml. As a result of using inaccurate census data that assigns prisoners as residents of the county they are in while they are in prison, Clallam county has 57% of its black population in prison, Mason County has 65% ,and Walla Walla has 58%.
Tags2008 Elections August 18 2009 Primary Barack Obama BIAW Bush campaign disclosure campaign finance Chris Gregoire congress Democrats Dino Rossi elections endorsements fuel efficiency standards George Bush global warming Governor Gregoire Hillary Clinton I-1033 Ingraham High School initiative 1033 Initiative 1053 initiatives John McCain King County Democrats No on 1033 No on I-1033 Peter Goldmark Presidential election Property Taxes Public Disclosure Commission Republicans Save the Trees - Seattle Seattle City Council Seattle School Board Seattle School District Senator Cantwell Tim Eyman Trees Urban Forestry US Senate US Supreme Court Washington State Washington State Legislature Washington State Supreme Court
- Revenue Forecast Shows it’s Time to Get Real: We Can’t Cut our Way to McCleary
- Statement on Recommendations to Reduce Carbon Emissions in Washington State
- Addressing Hunger in Washington State
- Investing in Two Generations for a Poverty-Free Future
- New Revenue Would Be Needed to Fund Class Size Initiative
- President Obama pledges to treat more new Americans with dignity in immigration speech
- Bill intended to force construction of Keystone XL pipeline fails to advance in U.S. Senate
- Class size initiative now has 18,000+ vote lead; Snohomish swings back into yes column
- North Korea releases imprisoned Americans Kenneth Bae and Matthew Miller
- Initiative to lower class sizes in Washington now passing by a slim margin