We’ve been seeing omens of significant population shifts among the states over the past decade for some time now. These occur on a decennial basis anyway, but some older trends appear to be reversing themselves in terms of specifically who is going where. The 2020 census will mark the official end to the current tracking, resulting in a reallocation of seats in the House of Representatives while also giving us a better idea of how cultural trends are morphing across the states. But with the 2019 figures from the Census Bureau in the books, we can now get a pretty good idea as to where the final numbers will fall. And they are telling a now-familiar story. People are indeed fleeing blue states for red states in an accelerating fashion and it’s not that hard to figure out why. (From Merrill Matthews at The Hill)
According to an Election Data Services analysis of the Census Bureau report, “The population projections point toward a ten [congressional] seat change over 17 states across the nation by year 2020.”
Seven states are projected to gain one or more congressional seats after the 2020 election; 10 states are projected lose one seat.
The red-state leader is Texas, with a projected pickup of three congressional seats following the 2020 census — and that after gaining four congressional seats after the 2010 election. Florida will pick up two seats, and Arizona, Colorado, Montana, North Carolina and Oregon will each gain one, according to the analysis.
As you can see from that list, of the seven states gaining seats, nearly all of them are red or purple by political leanings. The ten states projected to lose at least one seat each are primarily from the opposite mold. They include California, Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Rhode Island. The two exceptions are Alabama and West Virginia. (Arguably, West Virginia is experiencing its own exodus because of the collapse of the coal industry. Alabama is a bit harder to figure out.)
As Matthews’ analysis goes on to point out, of the seven states gaining seats, five of them voted for Trump in 2016. The ten states losing seats split evenly between Trump and Clinton. So the net shift would appear to play in the GOP’s favor going into 2021 and beyond.
But that good news may be relatively short-lived. In a depressing example of irony, the influx of new voters from blue states into red ones has been bringing with it a surge of liberal, Democratic voters. This has led to some traditionally red states becoming increasingly competitive for the Democrats. (Texas is probably the best example, though the tide there hasn’t fully turned yet.)
The grim humor in this is that these migrants seem to fail to realize that the conditions they were fleeing in those blue states were a direct result of the policies put in place by liberals. Higher taxes, more oppressive governmental regulations and “woke” policies that are more tolerant of crime and damaging to traditional values made many of those places basically unlivable. But by coming into red states, where lower costs of living, more freedom, and better security were waiting, and voting the way they always have, they’re basically bringing their own poison with them into their new pool.
The bigger question for some of us is whether the disaffected voters who are sticking it out in their home states will look at these numbers and finally begin to get a clue. New York is one of the biggest culprits and largest losers in the emigration race. Will voters there finally tire of the liberal madness that has driven so many of their friends and family out of the state? One of the best examples is the chaos brought about by the recently enacted bail “reform” law and it’s in the news every day. Perhaps that will be the straw that finally breaks the liberal camel’s back. But I’m too much of a natural pessimist to believe that just yet.