Saturday, May 06, 2006

People Are Moving to Red States

Via Tom McMahon, the fact that internal migration in the United States is generally from blue (liberal) states and to red (conservative) states.

The political implications of this aren’t clear. On the one hand, decennial reapportionment in the House and the Electoral College tends to increase the power of the red states.

On the other hand, liberals don’t immediately drop their liberal politics when they move from blue to red states. They may in fact tip some red states into the blue column. Florida remains pretty competitive because of migration of old people (heavily Democratic, although not socially liberal) from the Northeast.

Add to this the fact that it isn’t clear that the people moving from the blue states are the liberals. It may well be that blue state conservatives are the ones moving.

One thing this should make clear, however, is the silliness of liberal attempts to portray the red states as cultural and economic (as well as political) backwaters. People seem to be voting with their feet for the red states.

It’s certainly true that you won’t find as many trendy restaurants with “fusion” in the description of their menu in Memphis or Jackson or Birmingham as in San Francisco. But what you will find in those Southern cities is fine restaurants selling great food cheap. And the best barbeque in the world. And a good steak at a reasonable price.

And then there is Louisiana (a red state culturally even if black voters in New Orleans have pushed it into the Democratic column). It has enough distinctive culture for a rather sizeable country.

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