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Introducting the CVAP Conversion Rate

April 29, 2011 2011 Redistricting 2 Comments

Welcome to another round of political sabermetrics. In this episode, I’m calculating what I call the CVAP Conversion Rates for Hispanic population. This is designed to tell us how “hollow” a district is. The data is taken from the TLC’s report on citizenship data. A little calculus was added to arrive at a calculation of HCVAP/HVAP in terms of raw numbers. I don’t concern myself with the margin of error in this process, so just assume that there’s a little bit of wiggle room if any of the numbers are close. The layout of all of these lists is DISTRICT – INCUMBENT – CONVERSION RATE.

First, the big picture numbers …

Harris County Average – 45.7%
Texas State Average – 59.8%

In other words, just less than half of Harris County Hispanics are citizens, whereas the statewide average is well over half. Looking at these by House District (as they are today, not in the plan just passed by the House), here’s the best and the worst.

Ten Best HCVAP Conversions

 35 - Aliseda   - 92.14%
 32 - Hunter    - 88.73%
 33 - Torres    - 86.86%
 84 - Frullo    - 85.20%
 71 - King      - 84.69%
 30 - Morrison  - 84.23%
119 - Gutierrez - 83.99%
123 - Villareal - 82.64%
 34 - Scott     - 81.76%
124 - Menendez  - 81.64%

 

Eleven Lowest HCVAP Conversions

137 - Hochberg  - 20.49%
102 - Carter    - 31.31%
133 - Murphy    - 32.00%
  7 - Simpson   - 33.53%
 11 - Hopson    - 34.62%
  6 - Berman    - 35.18%
  5 - Hughes    - 35.22%
 16 - Creighton - 35.95%
 95 - Veasey    - 36.41%
  9 - Christian - 36.42%
  3 - Cain      - 36.77%

 

I added an extra one here to ensure that the scope of the issue is seen in rural East Texas. Those showings are probably the biggest surprise in the data. It may also explain why some of the more vocal anti-immigrant voices have come from rural districts such as these. Hopson, for instance, ran on the the issue even while he was a Democrat.

And just to get a glimpse of how the wide the disparity is even within Harris County, here’s each House District within the County …

Harris County HCVAP Conversion

126 - Harless  - 43.65%
127 - Huberty  - 52.95%
128 - Smith    - 55.29%
129 - Davis    - 60.01%
130 - Fletcher - 51.25%
131 - Allen    - 37.29%
132 - Callegari - 39.59%
133 - Murphy   - 32.00%
134 - Davis    - 73.67%
135 - Elkins   - 45.97%
136 - Woolley  - 45.69%
137 - Hochberg - 20.49%
138 - Bohac    - 39.86%
139 - Turner   - 38.33%
140 - Walle    - 46.42%
141 - Thompson - 37.14%
142 - Dutton   - 44.53%
143 - Luna     - 52.78%
144 - Legler   - 54.49%
145 - Alvarado - 55.86%
146 - Miles    - 39.12%
147 - Coleman  - 45.62%
148 - Farrar   - 57.05%
149 - Vo       - 45.87%
150 - Riddle   - 47.05%

 

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Currently there are "2 comments" on this Article:

  1. houtopia says:

    I think it may not be quite right to say that just less than half of Harris County Hispanics are non-citizens. Remember, it is a young population, relative to everyone else. There are a lot of Hispanics in Harris County (and across the state) who don’t meet the CVAP threshold, not because they are non-citizens, but because they are under 18.

  2. gregwythe says:

    The age issue is accounted for by tracking CVAP against VAP instead of total population. There are still some timing issues of the 2005-09 CVAP counts understating the 2010 extent of Hispanic population growth, but thus far, that’s proven to be about 1-2 percentage points worth of understatement.

    ADD-ON: It’s also worth pointing out that there may be some not-insignificant issues with the response rates of ACS forms compared to the Census and that the margin of error built into the ACS data may have a very different interpretation for language-isolated minorities than it does for other populations. In other words – it may be that the full “over” is needed to be accurate for Hispanic populations while other populations may warrant the “under.” I haven’t seen much that helps enumerate either of these, but the Census Bureau seems to be fairly open about their concern of ACS return rates without suggesting how they account for that. In either case, I do agree that the counts offer a very conservative estimate.

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