A report released today reveals that North Carolina has 115,000 registered Latino voters or nearly 25,000 more than the official count at the State Board of Elections (which only began asking voters their ethnicity in 2002). That’s a 35% increase over the number in October 2008. In addition, the report says another 100,000 unregistered Latino citizens could be signed up to vote by November. The report by Democracy North Carolina and a trio of Latino organizations also describes key characteristics of the Latino electorate and strategies for engaging them in the political process. For example, it points out that 62% of Latino registered voters are ages 18-40, compared to 34% of white and 43% of black registered voters. No racial or ethnic group has a higher proportion of Unaffiliated voters (37%), which suggests that neither party should take the growing Latino vote for granted. The report pinpoints the counties with the most Hispanics, in absolute numbers and as a percent of the county’s population. Contrary to the stereotype of Hispanics being single men from Mexico who enter the US illegally and migrant from job to job, the report notes that 58% of the Latinos in North Carolina are citizens, 39% originate from a country other than Mexico, and 47% are women. A one-page version of the report is available for download here.