What 2012 population could mean for the 2020 election
It’s worth noting that the overall trend continues to be one from blue states to red states. Under the first scenario, Romney would have picked up two electoral votes over his 2012 totals. Under the second, he would have picked up four electoral votes over his 2012 totals, and the “sweep the South, plus Ohio, plus one other state” strategy would have dropped the “some other state” part. Some argue that Texas and Arizona will be purple by 2024 (the first presidential year under these numbers), but I am skeptical. This is an argument for another article, but it is worth noting that, despite the demographic shifts, the Republican vote shares here haven’t budged in the past eight years.
In the bigger picture, this is more consequential. Under the second scenario, Bush would have won 287 electoral votes in 2000 and 294 in 2004; he could have lost Ohio and either Iowa or New Mexico (the two closest states) but still would have won.