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December 22, 2004
The Growing Republican Majority

Bizjournals published a study it conducted on population shifts within the United States, and it concludes that red states will see more representation in Congress and the Electoral College after 2010 than now, and the gains will come at some expense to blue states:

Arizona, Florida, Texas and Utah would each gain one seat in the U.S. House of Representatives if districts were reapportioned today, according to an analysis by American City Business Journals.

Iowa, New York, Ohio and Pennsylvania, on the other hand, would each lose a seat.

The U.S. Census Bureau released new state-by-state population estimates for 2004 Wednesday. ACBJ used those figures to hypothetically reapportion House seats today, six years in advance of the next scheduled reapportionment in 2010.

The gains are split between red and blue states, although Iowa barely qualified as a red state this year. Momentum seems to be shifting towards the redder states, those least likely to become battleground states, with the notable exception of Florida. Arizona, Texas, and Utah all reported double-digit wins for George Bush in the last election, while Pennsylvania barely eked out a win for John Kerry.

The question that Bizjournal needs to answer is exactly who is moving from these states? A drain of urban voters could dilute a bit of the Republican strength in the red states, but for Pennsylvania, such a drain could turn the state red. (Most of the Kerry lead came from Philadelphia; the rest of the state went red.) On the other hand, an exodus of Republicans to the West will act to polarize all states involved in the change, perhaps solidifying both parties' hold on the 2004 states. Even in that case, it's a net loss for the Democrats, as the electoral weight still shifts to the Republicans.

It demonstrates that the Republican realignment is a growing phenomenon, one that appears to have legs. Of course, with party leaders such as John Conyers, Howard Dean, John Kerry, and Jesse Jackson, the Democrats hardly appear open to the kind of self-assessment necessary to reverse its course. While they wallow in conspiracy theories and delusional victimhood, the Republicans will continue to erode their base by attracting the moderate vote. Very soon, if not already, upcoming centrist politicians will view the GOP as the best way to get elected, cementing the Democrats' minority status for at least a generation.

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at December 22, 2004 1:12 PM

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Tracked on December 22, 2004 5:30 PM

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