Communities of interest

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A community of interest is broad term in redistricting that is intended to recognize that when individuals share a common social or economic interest a district that links them can enhance their ability to elect candidates that will advance their interest.

The simplest communities of interest are the local communities with which people identify. Maintaining political units like counties and cities serve to protect these communities of interest and are dealt with by maintaining geographic integrity. Larger senses of community include metropolitan areas that are defined by housing, transportation, and employment.

Communities of interest can also be based on demographic factors such as socioeconomic status, race, ethnicity, culture, population age, or shared history. Communities of interest based on race or language ethnicity are covered by the federal Voting Rights Act and can have important implications on redistricting.

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