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N.J.’s new congressional districts show how diverse the state has become

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A voter signs in at the St. Thomas Greek Orthodox Church in Cherry Hill in November. The state’s new Congressional map reflects New Jersey’s changing demographics. The last time New Jersey’s independent redistricting commission redrew the state’s 12 congressional districts, whites were a minority in three of them.

During the last 10 years, New Jerseyans sent their first Black woman , Bonnie Watson Coleman, and first Asian-American , Andy Kim, to Congress.

Demographic changes over the past decade already had meant that five districts were majority-minority and Henal Patel, director of democracy and justice for the New Jersey Institute for Social Justice, said the commission simply codified the facts on the ground, reflecting how diverse New Jersey has become.

When compared with 2010 data, the new maps paint a significantly different picture of the New Jersey electorate. Data released this week by the restricting commission show the increase in minority residents. That rise, much of it due to immigration, enabled the state to retain its 12 House seats after Census Bureau estimates indicated a much smaller growth in population.

In fact, the growth among minority residents was so significant that a coalition of progressive, minority and good-government groups, known as Fair Districts New […]

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