All 10 states losing House seats have Democratic registration advantages

posted at 8:50 am on December 27, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

Gallup’s analysis of the reapportionment results are not necessarily a big surprise — and perhaps worse for Democrats than this shows.  Based on Gallup’s surveys earlier in the year on party identification, they note that all of the ten states that lost representation in the House have overall Democratic affiliation advantages.  Five of the eight gainers have GOP affiliation advantages:

Over the years, relative changes in population across the states have resulted in extraordinary shifts in political power. The traditionally Democratic state of New York, for example, has gone from 45 congressional seats after the 1940 census to 27 seats after the 2010 census. On the other hand, Texas, in recent decades a reliably Republican state, has gone from 21 to 36 seats during the same time frame.

Nine of the 10 states that lost congressional seats as a result of this year’s census are in the Northeast or Midwest. The exception is Louisiana, whose population loss at least partly as a result of Hurricane Katrina cost it a seat. Politically, all 10 of these “losing” states skew Democratic in political orientation, based on Gallup’s latest state political identification data from January through June of this year. The two states that each lost two seats, Ohio and New York, have a net Democratic political identification of +7 and +19, respectively. The Democratic margin in the other eight losing states ranges from +20 in Massachusetts to +1 in Missouri.

The eight states that gained congressional seats this year present a more mixed political picture. Texas was the big winner, gaining four seats as a result of its extraordinary growth from a population of almost 21 million in 2000 to 25 million in 2010. Texas has a net Democratic party identification of -3, meaning that more Texas adults identify as Republicans than as Democrats. On the other hand, Florida gained two seats, and has a net Democratic identification of +4. Party identification skews Republican in four of the remaining six states, all of which gained one congressional seat, ranging from a -32 net Democratic margin in Utah (Utah is the most Republican state) to -3 in Georgia. Both Nevada and Washington have net positive Democratic party identifications.

While the states’ party affiliation breakdowns may have favored Democrats, at least a couple of the 10 have traditionally supported Republicans in presidential elections.  Ohio went to Obama in 2008 and Missouri almost did as well, but both states went heavily Republican in the 2010 midterms.  Louisiana had been mostly Democratic in state elections but was fairly reliably Republican in presidential contests; McCain won Louisiana in 2008 by eighteen points.  For that matter, even one of the supposed Democratic gainers, Florida, went heavily Republican in the midterm after going for Obama in 2008; Florida also narrowly went Republican in both of George W. Bush’s elections, and Bill Clinton only won it once (1996) with less than 50% of the vote.

Incidentally, this does tend to negate one argument after the reapportionment was announced.  Some has framed this as a challenge to Republicans because of the nature of the population growth, ie, the more rapid increase in non-white population.  However, these changes didn’t just happen in the final months of the decade between the two censuses.  Even after all of the population change and movement, Republicans won a resounding victory in the 2010 elections, and not just on the national level.  The GOP also picked up a record number of seats in state legislatures in this election, flipping almost two dozen chambers across the country.  That came at the end of that migration and growth, not at its beginning, which means that the changes don’t appear to have disadvantaged Republicans at all.

Michael Barone’s analysis probably comes closest to the truth: low-tax states attract larger populations, while high-tax, high-regulatory states tend to lose people.  That also works in the GOP’s favor, and explains why it resulted in such a resounding win in these midterms.

Update: Missouri went to McCain by a very narrow margin in 2008 — fourteen one-hundredths of a point.  I originally had Missouri as going for Obama in this post.


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Long may the slaughter continue.

OldEnglish on December 27, 2010 at 8:58 AM

Ohio and Missouri went to Obama in 2008, but both states went heavily Republican in the 2010 midterms.

I believe Missouri went for McCain in 2008

right4life on December 27, 2010 at 9:00 AM

traditionally Democratic state of New York, for example, has gone from 45 congressional seats after the 1940 census to 27 seats after the 2010 census.

is that like a 3000% decrease or something?//

ted c on December 27, 2010 at 9:03 AM

The ones who cannot move from those blue states are mostly low income or government-dependent. It will only get worse for those states as they increase taxes on the remaining wage-earners and higher-income folk and more of them flee the coming serfdom. Vicious cycle getting more vicious all the time.

Extrafishy on December 27, 2010 at 9:04 AM

One concern is that newcomers to Red states bring their old voting patterns with them. I have an aunt and uncle who are life-long Chicagoans. I love them dearly despite their liberal voting habits. They have now retired to northern Indiana to escape the onerous Illinois taxes (which they have always voted to increase with their “D” ballots.) They are now voting “D” in Indiana.

grgeil on December 27, 2010 at 9:07 AM

I believe Missouri went for McCain in 2008

right4life on December 27, 2010 at 9:00 AM

That is correct, though it was so close it took a while for the result to be confirmed.

Vashta.Nerada on December 27, 2010 at 9:07 AM

If the Repubs don’t deliver on what they promised, it will all swing back in ’12 and with Zero winning another term. This country will ride off into the sunset.

Kissmygrits on December 27, 2010 at 9:08 AM

After the 2008 election Time magazine had a picture of the GOP elephant that was captioned: “Endangered species?”. It made me laugh so I tore it off and kept it. Little did I know that a short two years later it would be the Democrats that would be scarce around the country.

Mord on December 27, 2010 at 9:09 AM

Regarding the overall analysis:

“Good news rides a fast horse!”

Let the reapportionment begin! Less Dems in 2012!!

Khun Joe on December 27, 2010 at 9:10 AM

is that like a 3000% decrease or something?//

ted c on December 27, 2010 at 9:03 AM

I see I’m not the only one that got a nice shiny new “Obamacare cost calculator” for Christmas.

VelvetElvis on December 27, 2010 at 9:12 AM

leftism, the dying demographic.

rob verdi on December 27, 2010 at 9:16 AM

I read a stat last night on one of the sites on the HA sidebar(can’t recall which, sorry). It said that 83 cents of every tax dollar in CA goes for public pensions. 83 cents!!!! Yet they blithely walk down the same street election after election. I become more and more convinced that they must either be the densest folk in the country or the most poorly informed–or both. There was another that said that in San Francisco the non-government employee pays an average of 943$ a month for health care but that government employees pay an average of 10$. I’m sure, that to a lesser degree that’s true probably everywhere. Our government is so far out of control that I wonder if anything can change it short of total collapse.

jeanie on December 27, 2010 at 9:18 AM

If the Repubs don’t deliver on what they promised, it will all swing back in ’12 and with Zero winning another term. This country will ride off into the sunset.

Kissmygrits on December 27, 2010 at 9:08 AM

There is some truth to this statement… However, don’t expect to get our political troubles fixed this term. The Republican party is littered with elitist establishment people who must be sent packing one election at a time. We have embedded socialist Judges who must be dealt with. We have a socialist media who are being financed by billionaires with endless supplies of money. There is much work to do and my hopes lie with the Tea party long term. It is our nature to turn our attention back to our own families and forget about these huge countrywide problems; this can’t happen at this point of the American experiment. Keeping our focus long term will be most difficult.

Keemo on December 27, 2010 at 9:21 AM

Yeah but this was before BARBOURGATE where it revealed that a guy who isn’t even running for President was the most racist racist who ever racisted or something.

Speedwagon82 on December 27, 2010 at 9:22 AM

I see I’m not the only one that got a nice shiny new “Obamacare cost calculator” for Christmas.

VelvetElvis on December 27, 2010 at 9:12 AM

I look forward to my huge 2011 tax savings from all those new cuts, efficiencies n’ such from every angle./

ted c on December 27, 2010 at 9:29 AM

Don’t Dems migrating to red states make them at least a little less red? Is the effect all in one direction, or too little to matter?

ParisParamus on December 27, 2010 at 9:31 AM

Our government is so far out of control that I wonder if anything can change it short of total collapse.

jeanie on December 27, 2010 at 9:18 AM

no, I’m afraid nothing can. we’re marching towards fascism as fast as possible. big sis and the rest of the jack-booted thugs in the administration make up rules as we go along.

right4life on December 27, 2010 at 9:32 AM

Blue states: Drive Through Country.

Yoop on December 27, 2010 at 9:38 AM

no, I’m afraid nothing can. we’re marching towards fascism as fast as possible. big sis and the rest of the jack-booted thugs in the administration make up rules as we go along.

right4life on December 27, 2010 at 9:32 AM

And the sad thing about it our young people will never know that it was once different and better. They’ll just accept it as the norm.

jeanie on December 27, 2010 at 9:38 AM

so..dying blue states hemorrhage people to red states. Don’t those states, that will eventually fill up just like the blue states did now have an incentive to raise taxes to slow the rapid growth? Conversely, don’t the high tax states now have an incentive to lower the tax rates to stem the tide, maintain a tax base, and keep their numbers up?

ted c on December 27, 2010 at 9:39 AM

If the Repubs don’t deliver on what they promised, it will all swing back in ’12 and with Zero winning another term. This country will ride off into the sunset.
Kissmygrits on December 27, 2010 at 9:08 AM

Republicans won’t be able to get much through the Senate or past Obama’s desk without the Democrats approval. They can block Obama’s agenda and that’s about all. Obama is the one with a choice on how to play it here, centrist like Clinton or hard left like his last two years.

I am hoping that people will notice what Republicans will do at the State and local levels. Hopefully, they start slashing State budgets and can take credit for it the way Chris Christie is.

jpmn on December 27, 2010 at 9:42 AM

is that like a 3000% decrease or something? – Ted

Thread winner!

Gotta love that Obama math!

Tony737 on December 27, 2010 at 9:46 AM

Conversely, don’t the high tax states now have an incentive to lower the tax rates to stem the tide, maintain a tax base, and keep their numbers up?

ted c on December 27, 2010 at 9:39 AM

In a perfect world maybe. Wonder though if the mind set in the high tax states can or will change…any time soon. As I see it, it’s taken all these years(70+or-) since FDR for either the pols or the voters to realize that the reasoning behind New Deal thinking and it’s children is deeply flawed when taken too far. In states such as CA, NY or RI(to name some notables)it may be entrenched to levels where only catastrophe can bring change.

jeanie on December 27, 2010 at 9:48 AM

“Loo-hoo-hoo-zers!”

–Ace Ventura

shawk on December 27, 2010 at 9:53 AM

Some has framed this as a challenge to Republicans…

Some has, and some hasn’t.

On another note, grammar are our friend. ;)

Midas on December 27, 2010 at 9:53 AM

Don’t Dems migrating to red states make them at least a little less red? Is the effect all in one direction, or too little to matter?

ParisParamus on December 27, 2010 at 9:31 AM

That effect simply means that Republicans would have picked up even more seats in the 2010 than they actual did had there not been migration.

pedestrian on December 27, 2010 at 9:56 AM

jpmn:Republicans won’t be able to get much through the Senate or past Obama’s desk without the Democrats approval.

True, but don’t forget that neither Obama nor the Senate can get anything accomplished without the House where funding for all this must originate/be approved. They’ll(hopefully!)have to work together.

jeanie on December 27, 2010 at 9:56 AM

Obama’s overall plan is to nationalize Chicago’s Cook County, so there’s no place in America to hide.

RBMN on December 27, 2010 at 10:02 AM

This efflux of citizens from these high tax states now magnifies their problems immensely. Higher taxes + fewer taxpayers + high unemployment = low revenue and increasing problems. This is an equation that just cannot continue indefinitely and CA and likely NY too (?) are careening toward their reckoning with the end of the line.

ted c on December 27, 2010 at 10:04 AM

True, but don’t forget that neither Obama nor the Senate can get anything accomplished without the House where funding for all this must originate/be approved. They’ll(hopefully!)have to work together.

jeanie on December 27, 2010 at 9:56 AM

The GOProgressives will grab their ankles in to try and show their willingness to be bi-partisan.
The GOP will betray the US.

darwin-t on December 27, 2010 at 10:06 AM

The GOProgressives will grab their ankles in to try and show their willingness to be bi-partisan.
The GOP will betray the US.

darwin-t on December 27, 2010 at 10:06 AM

Maybe you’re right but after this last election I wonder. I think that many, if not most, will tread carefully.

jeanie on December 27, 2010 at 10:09 AM

Maybe the Dems should stop killing their young.

tomg51 on December 27, 2010 at 10:20 AM

I am hoping that people will notice what Republicans will do at the State and local levels. Hopefully, they start slashing State budgets and can take credit for it the way Chris Christie is.

jpmn on December 27, 2010 at 9:42 AM

Exactly right.. Here in my state of Montana, I got an invite as a small business owner to speak in front of our legislative body (with other business owners) and make recommendations as to what direction our law makers should take in order to get our state and local economies growing once again. Republicans won huge here in this last election cycle, and now it’s time to deliver… They seem to know this and are embracing the opportunity.

Keemo on December 27, 2010 at 10:23 AM

I just hope when they do reapportionment in GA that I finally get moved into an area represented by a Republican. My little corner of the world is one of those gerrymandered districts and I wound up in the Democrat part. The rest of the county, we actually have 3 reps in Congress, are represented by Repubs. Remember down south we still have to abide by that onerous civil rights era voter rights act so redistricting is always a hassle. It normally takes about 3 times before all the courts will sign off on it. It is time to get this yoke off the neck of southerners. That act is repressive and does nothing but help institutionalize the stereotype of racism in the south.

Redistricting always winds up being along mostly racial lines so that the blacks, who quickly are becoming the second largest minority group in America, being exceeded by the Hispanics, maintain a face in congress. We also have the phenomenon here of Democrats in the state legislature switching parties to the Republicans because we have a very different view of what constitutes liberal and conservative. The Dems down here recognize what is happening on the national stage as what it is, creeping socialism. The three remaining Democrat reps we have in the US congress are A) Black and B) from metro Atlanta. They are little more then Pelosi’s lap dogs. She says jump and they say how high.

And now you know more about GA politics then you probably ever wanted to.

Just A Grunt on December 27, 2010 at 10:34 AM

So how do they decide which congress critters get the axe?

And do they hold special elections to fill the new spots?

Sonosam on December 27, 2010 at 10:39 AM

I agree with the tax policy argument because that’s a tangible that can be felt. But I think the relocation dynamic is fueled by knowledge that in previous decades, was much more difficult to come by. The internet explosion has allowed people, specifically during the last decade, to better explore their options, especially in the area of residency. Having worked in the housing industry for the last 18+ years, I was amazed at the knowledge possessed by potential buyers regarding things like tax policy and school systems. Affluent people -especially- became very specific about where they chose to purchase during the last decade; that knowledge gained by simple research on the laptop computer while drinking their morning coffee. A condition not possible in decades past.

So, I think that a better educated buyer, along with an increasingly smaller world, has allowed people to flee their traditional homesteads for greener pastures.

Or, it’s GWB’s fault.

Or SP’s.

BKeyser on December 27, 2010 at 10:52 AM

The problem with the migration to Red States is that they bring their Blue State habits. Their ideas for “improving” your area will not make you happy.

Cindy Munford on December 27, 2010 at 10:56 AM

The GOP will betray the US.

darwin-t on December 27, 2010 at 10:06 AM

The Senate, maybe. The House has tended to be a lot less squishy, with the new teaparty folks I’m hopeful they’ll hold the line.

What’s actually more important is the GOP blowouts on the state level – a lot of good work can be done at that level.

Rebar on December 27, 2010 at 10:56 AM

The GOProgressives will grab their ankles in to try and show their willingness to be bi-partisan.
The GOP will betray the US.

darwin-t on December 27, 2010 at 10:06 AM

Very astute and very true. That’s why we have to nurture the libertarian/Tea Party wing of the party. If we don’t, the Republic is lost.

shawk on December 27, 2010 at 11:29 AM

So how do they decide which congress critters get the axe?

And do they hold special elections to fill the new spots?

Sonosam on December 27, 2010 at 10:39 AM

Each state has different rules. Some have a legislative committee and others have special commissions to draw up the new maps. There won’t be any special elections.

pedestrian on December 27, 2010 at 11:33 AM

That’s why we have to nurture the libertarian/Tea Party wing of the party. If we don’t, the Republic is lost.

shawk on December 27, 2010 at 11:29 AM

the libertarians are useless. they’re pro gay marriage, and pro abortion…their republic isn’t worth saving.

right4life on December 27, 2010 at 12:10 PM

It is our nature to turn our attention back to our own families and forget about these huge countrywide problems; this can’t happen at this point of the American experiment. Keeping our focus long term will be most difficult.

Keemo on December 27, 2010 at 9:21 AM

This.

We must stay focused, lest History hang us on our self-woven rope of hypocrisy.

Who is John Galt on December 27, 2010 at 12:28 PM

Believe it or not, this has a connection to gay “marriage.”

You see, gay “marriage” is part of a larger, Progressive ethic of family formation (or to be more accurate, an anti-ethic). Progressives are, at their core, hedonists; they think marriage and reproduction are for self-fulfillment. In all other cultures and in religious American, marriage and reproduction are a human obligation, aimed at perpetuating the species and passing along the culture. In those cultures, talking of gay “marriage” is about as sensible as talking about cows “thinking.” Marriage is about reproduction and passing along societal norms and stories, not about feeling good about yourself. Gays aren’t physically capable of doing it. End of discussion.

Every place where the Progressive anti-ethic of self-fulfillment has taken hold, birth rates drop far below replacement. Progressive “reproductive rights” are actually the modern version of Shaker theology: you join to be righteous, but whoever does, dies out. This is the case all over Europe, and is also the case in Blue State America.

This is why every succeeding census will show an increase for Republicans and a decrease for Democrats. They’ve embraced an ethic that causes a group to end itself. It’s also why the Democrats are so completely committed to erasing the border between America and Mexico, and to completely taking over the education system — recruiting is the only way they can expand.

The devil is a self-defeating task-master; whenever you sign onto his agenda, you embrace the seeds of your own demise.

philwynk on December 27, 2010 at 1:04 PM

The devil is a self-defeating task-master; whenever you sign onto his agenda, you embrace the seeds of your own demise.

philwynk on December 27, 2010 at 1:04 PM

As it will be in the future, it was at the birth of Man
There are only four things certain since Social Progress began.
That the Dog returns to his Vomit and the Sow returns to her Mire,
And the burnt Fool’s bandaged finger goes wabbling back to the Fire;

And that after this is accomplished, and the brave new world begins
When all men are paid for existing and no man must pay for his sins,
As surely as Water will wet us, as surely as Fire will burn,
The Gods of the Copybook Headings with terror and slaughter return!

right4life on December 27, 2010 at 1:28 PM

On the other hand, Florida gained two seats, and has a net Democratic identification of +4.

Florida has a high population of retired people, “snowbirds” who have moved there from the Northeast and Midwest to escape the snow and ice. Many of them may have registered as Democrats when they first moved there, but with Obama cutting Medicare funding to “pay” for health insurance for young people who don’t want it, a lot of them voted R for Rubio this time, and will vote R for Regulatory Relief in 2012.

Steve Z on December 27, 2010 at 1:57 PM

As the PROGRESSIVES tax and spend and spend the deficit so high as to be unsustainable there is only one solution.
It will be tried with the States as with the individual that those who are healthy and self sufficient will be called upon to bailout their irresponsible “brethern”.

States bailouts, the ultimate in socialist redistribution and rewards for correct thinking and action!

Will the House led by the emotionally incapacitated Boehner and the Senate led by the RINO McConnell have the guts or desire to stand against this redistribution of wealth that OBlahBLah will attempt?

Not when the situation is portrayed as a crisis about to bring down the whole country, the usual PROGRESSIVE Repugs, McCain, Graham, Snowe, Collins, Brown, Hatch will side with the Commies in pushing us ever closer to Federal Rule!

dhunter on December 27, 2010 at 2:23 PM

You see, gay “marriage” is part of a larger, Progressive ethic of family formation (or to be more accurate, an anti-ethic). Progressives are, at their core, hedonists; they think marriage and reproduction are for self-fulfillment. In all other cultures and in religious American, marriage and reproduction are a human obligation, aimed at perpetuating the species and passing along the culture. In those cultures, talking of gay “marriage” is about as sensible as talking about cows “thinking.” Marriage is about reproduction and passing along societal norms and stories, not about feeling good about yourself. Gays aren’t physically capable of doing it. End of discussion.

The Progressive / Democrat view of abortion has an even larger long-term effect than “gay marriage”. If pro-choice Democrats abort many of their babies, while pro-life Republicans have large families, if children imitate the voting habits of their parents, over a generation or two there will be more Republican voters.

There is a counteracting trend among Catholic voters, many of whom vote Democrat out of “charity toward the poor”, or a throwback to the late 19th and early 20th centuries when Catholics were a poor, oppressed minority that needed Government help to escape from poverty. Several nominally-Catholic politicians (including the Kennedys, John Kerry, and Nancy Pelosi, all of whom are fabulously rich) have been using their “welfare for the poor Catholics” meme to justify pro-abortion votes, even though the official Catholic Church is strongly pro-life.

Some Catholic voters are confused or divided about this, and wonder whether they should vote for “charity for the poor” or “pro-life” politicians. Republicans can reach out to these voters by stressing that COERCED giving to the poor (via taxation and welfare payments) result in less aid to the poor (due to bureaucratic inefficiency) than VOLUNTARY gifts to charity (which are tax-deductible).

If the Federal Government takes $100 in taxes to give to the poor, the poor might end up with $80 after the bureaucrats get their cut. Most private charities use less than 10% of donated funds for expenses, so that if a person donates $100, the poor get more than $90, but this also reduces the person’s income taxes by $15 to $35. So a person can donate a net $65 to $85, and the poor get over $90. Isn’t this better for the poor than paying the Government $100 so a poor person gets $80? Republicans should also argue for allowing taxpayers who DON’T ITEMIZE deductions to deduct charitable giving from their taxable income.

Steve Z on December 27, 2010 at 2:31 PM

The ones who cannot move from those blue states are mostly low income or government-dependent. It will only get worse for those states as they increase taxes on the remaining wage-earners and higher-income folk and more of them flee the coming serfdom. Vicious cycle getting more vicious all the time.

Extrafishy on December 27, 2010 at 9:04 AM

Add to that the govt union thugs who will never leave. So the only wage “earners” will be govt employees.

angryed on December 27, 2010 at 2:40 PM

Keemo on December 27, 2010 at 10:23 AM

Montana has 2 Dem US Senators and a Dem governor. Not exactly a recipe for success that the GOP should follow elsewhere.

angryed on December 27, 2010 at 2:47 PM

True, but don’t forget that neither Obama nor the Senate can get anything accomplished without the House where funding for all this must originate/be approved. They’ll(hopefully!)have to work together.
jeanie on December 27, 2010 at 9:56 AM

Both parties “working together” is what has gotten us into this mess. Hopefully, no compromises can be reached and we start to have shutdowns. The Republicans got blamed under Clinton but I’m not sure Obama can triangulate while keeping the hard left happy.

jpmn on December 27, 2010 at 10:57 PM

The three remaining Democrat reps we have in the US congress are A) Black and B) from metro Atlanta. They are little more then Pelosi’s lap dogs. She says jump and they say how high.

And now you know more about GA politics then you probably ever wanted to.

Just A Grunt on December 27, 2010 at 10:34 AM

You’re leaving out at least 2 Dem reps–John Barrow used to be almost conservative until following Pelosi got him a 27% rating. He represents Augusta and the rural conservative counties held hostage to black south Augusta.
Also Sanford Bishop of southwestern GA admitted wrongdoing in the Negro College Fund scandal but won re-election at midnight of Nov 2nd when a stash of ballots almost exclusively his that were “almost forgotten about” were “remembered” in time to be included in the count. The stash was so predominantly his that including it took him from trailing to winning by almost 3% which removed the hopes for an automatic recount.(the R challenger ‘lost graciously’)

Certain parts of the state are still proud of being backward, and other than the governor’s mansion, they are NOT represented by Republicans.

rwenger43 on December 28, 2010 at 1:00 AM

Hey Capt Ed, where is the headline map from? There are some interesting colors that I would like to examine. I live in CO CD3 which shows up as dark red – Scott Tipton did not beat incumbent John Salazar by that much. Additionally, it looks like half the southern border is dark red, whereas Arizona and SoTex are bright blue; I find that curious.

bains on December 28, 2010 at 1:09 AM

Incidentally, this does tend to negate one argument after the reapportionment was announced. Some has framed this as a challenge to Republicans because of the nature of the population growth, ie, the more rapid increase in non-white population. However, these changes didn’t just happen in the final months of the decade between the two censuses. Even after all of the population change and movement, Republicans won a resounding victory in the 2010 elections, and not just on the national level. The GOP also picked up a record number of seats in state legislatures in this election, flipping almost two dozen chambers across the country

In OH many non-whites voted Repub because “at least under the Republicans I had a job”. Seems to be the same reason in most states that went Republican in Governorships and State Legislatures.

elclynn on December 28, 2010 at 1:06 PM