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GOP influence to grow as population shifts south?

This Wash Times article spins that the Repugs benefit most from the shift in population. The South’s population is projected to grow by 42.9 percent and the West by 45.8 percent, at the expense of the Midwest (9.5 percent) and the Northeast (7.6 percent). The theory, forwarded by Emory’s Merle Black, is that it will be harder for the Dems to win the presidency because of this.

Migration from liberal bastions in the Northeast and Midwest to the Sun Belt states will boost Republican electoral strength in the coming decade, making it tougher than ever for Democrats to win the presidency without carrying states in the South or Southwest.

…Heavily Democratic states such as New York, New Jersey, Illinois and Michigan will go on losing congressional seats and thus electoral strength in presidential elections, political analysts say. At the same time, they say, Republican states such as Florida, Texas, Arizona, Georgia and Nevada likely will gain congressional and electoral clout.

“The net beneficiary of this will continue to be the Republican Party because the population shift is moving into an environment that is heavily dominated by the Republicans,” says Merle Black, a professor of politics and government at Emory University and author of books on political shifts in the South. “In the 2002 and 2004 exit polls, we saw for the first time a majority of Southern white voters identifying themselves as Republicans and Democratic identification falling to a low 20 [percent] to 25 percent,” Mr. Black says. This doesn’t mean that Democrats cannot win, but population shifts give the GOP “a long-term structural advantage,” he says, “and assuming they nominate credible candidates, they start with a strong base.” He adds: “The Republicans will continue to be the dominant party in the South for the foreseeable future.”

Other factoids in the article:

* The share of Americans living in the Northeast and Midwest will fall from 42 percent to 35 percent of the population, while the South and West will rise from 58 percent to 65 percent.

* Ohio, a pivotal swing state in presidential races, will drop from seventh to ninth place in population, while Republican-rich Georgia will move up from 10th to eighth.

* Florida is expected to pass New York and move into third place by 2011

* California and Texas remaining in first and second, respectively.

* California, Florida and Texas are expected to grow by more than 12 million in population and will account for 46 percent of the growth between 2000 and 2030.

The article also notes that among the 10 most populated states, Democrat-leaning Michigan and New Jersey will be supplanted in population by heavily Republican and fast-growing Arizona and North Carolina. I dispute that most of the votes moving to NC are Red ones; our state legislature is consistently Democratic, the cities that are the economic engines of the state are more progressive than the rural parts of the state. I agree that in the national races, NC will continue to go GOP unless the party here can field candidates, like John Edwards, that are able to marshal support from the progressives and the large moderate base of voters.

Let’s put it this way — Hillary will go nowhere in NC.

Also not considered is the fact is that in many of the Northern states, the cost of living is too darn high, the winters are too long, and you can’t buy a house if you’re a first-time buyer (see Housing Markets Pricing Out Middle Class). That’s crosses all political boundaries.

Look what the Freepi have to say; many agree and fear a liberal menace is going to pollute their holy land (too late — I’m already here polluting the Tar Heel State, lolololol)…

Actual Freeper Quotes™

“It sounds good to me. This is the Lords work!”

“I hope, however, that that doesn’t mean that libs from the North are invading the South.”

“same thought crossed my mind…”

“People are getting tired of living in liberal rat holes. I don’t blame them for leaving.”

“But my worry, especially as a Southerner, is that a greater liberal population may be migrating into the red states, slowly turning them into blue states. And that’s just wrong.”

“As the conditions in the country get worse [due to political correctness (forced socialism)] people will continue to leave the oppressive liberal areas for freer, safer ground. If hell ever breaks loose (terrorism, crime, etc.), they don’t want to be stuck living around a bunch of rabid liberals. I think it’s a good thing. The good people are being called out.”

“AZ is a perfect example of that. Although still conservative I’m not sure Goldwater could get elected here now.”

“I’m not sure Goldwater could get elected here now. McCain can…..and does.”

“It is up to you to indoctrinate them into Southern Living and that means being a conservative. We are not only to holding our own in California but are starting to shift away from the Democratic party stronghold here. The Hispanic population is starting to wise up and they are switching to the Republican Party.”

“What is happening is the republicans and conservatives in strongly blue states are getting fed up and moving. All that does for blue states is leaves them weaker and smaller and bluer. While the people of MA are moving in heavy numbers into states like NH, the Live Free or Die folks are moving out to redder pastures.”

“I don’t know if you believe in prophecy or not, but as we get closer to the California quake and last world war, the good folks will be lead to safer areas. They’ll just “know” where to go.”

“Yes, those libs from the north have a way of ruining things down here.”

“The more people move to conservative areas, the more crowded they will become. And the more crowded they become, the more liberal they will become. And the more the Republican party will lean to the left to hold on to the votes.”

“Well I am from Michigan, a blue midwest state. Even though this state is not the bluest of the blue (like the northeast states are), I have given up on Michigan. I will soon be one of those people who leave for the south (Tennessee). I am not leaving to bring northern values down, just the oposite im sick of people and the liberal values up here. I dont belong here, and im moving somewhere were my values are more respected and my son can grow up with better values. I love the south and im sure ill fit in fine there, and i certainly hope liberals do not succeed in changing it. When this midwesterner gets there it will only get redder.”

“Most of the New Yorkers who move to Florida bring their liberal voting habits with them, which is why Palm Beach, St. Lucie, and Broward Counties are such liberal hellholes.”

“I’m with you both. I sure as heck hope the emigrants from the North and East don’t bring their socialism and hedonist values with them. In a microcosmic sense, that is exactly what’s happened here in Columbus. This burgh used to be a bedrock of patriotic, common-sense conservatism. Then wave after wave of lefty transferees showed up from Cleveland, Pittsburgh and the Eastern seaboard and…voilà! Now we’ve got a big homo population here, an increasingly liberal attitude on social issues, an all-Democrat city hall, and the county has gone Blue every election since ’96. I sincerely hope this doesn’t happen to the South!!!

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding