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North Carolina lacks Latino representation despite growing population

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Tom Bullock

North Carolina’s Latino population grew around 40% between 2010 and 2020. That is about five times as high as the non-Latino population. Many are young and in the state’s most populous counties, according to a study of census data by the NALEO Educational Fund.

Meanwhile, there is an under representation of Latino lawmakers. For example, in 2020 Rep. Ricky Hurtado became the first Latino Democrat elected to the North Carolina General Assembly.

North Carolina has never elected a Latino congressmember or senator, according to U.S. House data.

While some are optimistic more representation is forthcoming, others worry Republican-drawn legislative maps will dilute the power of Latino voters.

Mike Collins and our panel of guests discuss the landscape.


Dorian Caal, director of civic engagement research at NALEO Educational Fund
Steve Harrison, WFAE political reporter
Wendy Mateo-Pascual, Latino community advocate & creator of "Latino Civic Engagement Program"

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Gabe Altieri is a Senior Producer for Charlotte Talks with Mike Collins. Prior to joining WFAE in 2022, he worked for WSKG Public Media in Binghamton, New York.