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Elections 2012: Hispanics Looking For November Gains In U.S. House

Hispanics are the fastest-growing group in the United States, increasing in population by more than 15 million between 2000 and 2010.

 

WASHINGTON -- Jose Hernandez worked in farm fields with his Mexican-immigrant parents before becoming an astronaut. Iraq War veteran Julius Melendez is the third generation of his Puerto Rican family to serve in the military. And Tony Cardenas, the youngest of 11 children of immigrant farmers from Jalisco, Mexico, has served in the California Assembly and on the Los Angeles City Council.

Next year, all of them could be coming to Congress.

The 2012 election is shaping up as a big one in the House for Hispanics. There are currently 29 in the House – including a Pacific islands delegate and Puerto Rico's resident commissioner – according to the Congressional Research Service. That number is virtually guaranteed to increase by at least three or four seats because of once-a-decade redistricting that's created new Hispanic-majority districts in California and Texas. On top of that, Hispanics could win more seats in New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada and Florida.

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