N.C. Electorate Reflects Big Demographic Shift

Since 2008, the number of Hispanics registered to vote in North Carolina has increased by more than 100 percent, according to a report released this month by the Institute for Southern Studies, a non-profit civil-rights organization based in North Carolina.

The growth among the number of minority voters - primarily people of Hispanics descent and those who are multiracial - has spurred changes to the makeup of the North Carolina electorate and resulted in a voting pool that more closely resembles that of Florida, according to ISS analysis of voter roles.

In both states, about a third of registered voters are racial or ethnic minorities.

In Florida and North Carolina, the share of white voters shrunk between 2008 and 2012 to just over 72 percent in North Carolina and less than 70 percent in Florida.

Hispanics and African Americans represent equal shares of the electorate in Florida - a little more than 13 percent each.

But the same is not true for North Carolina. Despite the startling growth of the Hispanic community in North Carolina, African Americans represent a significantly larger share of the electorate, according to the report. In 2012, African Americans represent more than 20 percent of registered voters in that state. Hispanics represented less than 2 percent.

The most striking growth came among North Carolina voters who fall into the category of "other," which jumped more than 250 percent. According to the report, "others" include those who don't identify as white, black, Hispanic or American Indian. This category often includes Asian-Americans, Hispanics and multi-racial voters as well as those who leave the field blank.

Although the category grew rapidly, "others" represented less than 5 percent of the total electorate.

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