Court Rules Prisoners Must Count in Their Home Towns

Ruling means most prisoners will count toward downstate populations -- not upstate prison totals

Friday, Dec 2, 2011  |  Updated 5:13 PM EDT
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Court Rules Prisoners Must Count in Their Home Towns

For most prisoners, that means they'll be tallied as living in heavily Democratic New York City and other urban areas for the purpose of redrawing election district lines.

A court has ruled prisoners must be counted as voters back in their home neighborhoods rather than in upstate prisons, a likely blow to the slim Republican majority in New York's Senate.

For most prisoners, that means they'll be tallied as living in heavily Democratic New York City and other urban areas for the purpose of redrawing election district lines.

That could result in more New York City-area districts in the Senate and Assembly at the expense of upstate districts that tend to be more Republican.

State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman called it a victory for fundamental fairness and equal representation.

Republicans who are redrawing Senate lines currently have a 32-30 advantage in the chamber.

Democrats have a stronger majority in the Assembly.

Most of New York's prisons are upstate.

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