Posted on August 13, 2021

Booming Texas Population Growth, Demographic Changes Set Stage for Redistricting Battle

Kevin Krause, Dallas Morning News, August 12, 2021

The less diverse populations east of Dallas-Fort Worth’s metropolitan area in Kaufman and Rockwall counties have exploded over the past decade, while in Dallas, Latinos now eclipse the population of non-Hispanic whites, according to U.S. census data released Thursday.

Statewide, Latinos now comprise 39% of the population, almost matching the percentage of non-Hispanic whites. And Latinos, Blacks, Asians, Native Americans and “multi-racial individuals” accounted for nearly 70% of the Texas population growth since 2010.

The rapid growth of communities of color is giving Texas “more political power in D.C,” said Joaquin Gonzalez, staff attorney with Texas Civil Rights Project, in a statement.

The highly anticipated census numbers are important because they offer the first hints of how shifting demographics will affect a legislative fight later this year as Texas undergoes redistricting and gains two congressional seats.


However, the more than 1 million Latino or Hispanic residents in Dallas County in 2020 accounted for 40% of the total population compared with 35% for whites.

A decade ago, whites comprised 53% of Dallas County’s population.

That mirrors major demographic changes involving people of color occurring statewide and nationwide.

The non-Hispanic white population in the U.S. got smaller for the first time, shrinking from 196 million in 2010 to 191 million in 2020.

During the same period, the nation’s Hispanic population grew by almost a quarter.

Hispanics comprised 18.7% of the U.S. population in 2020, up from 16.3% a decade earlier. In addition to Texas, states such as Florida, New York, Illinois and California also saw Hispanic growth.

Some demographers, however, cautioned that the white population was not shrinking as much as shifting to multiracial identities.

The number of people who identified as belonging to two or more races more than tripled from 9 million people in 2010 to 33.8 million in 2020. They now account for 10% of the U.S. population.

In Tarrant County, whites dipped below 50% of the population for the first time. Latinos in that county represent almost 30% of total residents, according to the census numbers.


While Dallas’ growth has slowed compared with the last census, international migration to the area has continued, making the county one of the nation’s most populous — and diverse, he said.

Those demographic changes in Dallas are being driven by an increase in immigration from places like Mexico, Central America and Asia, he said. And those new arrivals tend to be younger, he added.


Among the immediate DFW suburbs, Collin County became the first to exceed 1 million residents, having grown by 36% over the past decade. Whites in that county cling to a slight majority at 54% of the total population.


Claudia Yoli Ferla, executive director of the MOVE Texas Action Fund, said in a statement that the census data confirms that “young people of color” are driving Texas’ population growth. And she called for fairness and transparency in the Legislature’s upcoming redistricting process.


Congress has never gotten a Latino representative from the Dallas area. Given the Latino population’s gains in Texas, Democrats will hope to change that.

Matt Angle, a Democratic Party strategist and founder of the research group called the Lone Star Project, said in a statement that his group will work with its allies to block Texas Republicans from trying to hold on to power by “suppressing minority voters” and denying them basic voting rights.


“Since Texas is gaining two more seats ONLY due to minority growth, both should allow minority voters to elect their candidate of choice,” he said.