Policy and politics often collide at the intersection of geography and demographics. The non-urban, non-college-educated white voter causing concern among Democrats these days, the suburban voter of 2018, and the heartland voter of 2016 are all profiles built on the common interests of certain people in certain types of places.
After 18 months of domestic migration prompted by a pandemic, another interest in addition to where people live has emerged in this equation: where people wish they lived.
Americans of all stripes, including young people, have long preferred suburban to urban living despite the prevailing (mis)conception in the media, but the twin crises of Covid and urban unrest in 2020 have clearly accentuated Americans’ desire to leave denser places. Not only have Americans continued apace in their usual migration from cities to suburbs, they also now aspire to live in towns and hinterlands more than one might expect.
Two national elections, one decisive and the other a cliffhanger, have shaken the politics of the West to its core. In the United Kingdom, just last month, Conservative candidate Boris Johnson won a resolute victory for himself and his party. In the United States, barely three years ago, Republican candidate Donald Trump won the presidential election in a stunning upset where he narrowly lost the popular vote but logged a solid victory in the Electoral College.
A new analysis finds that immigration will dramatically reshape the Electoral College map in favor of the Democratic Party after completion of the 2020 census.
In the summer of 2018, journalist Vivian Yee amused herself with the thought that Orange Country, California, was once an agricultural, “conservative (think Richard Nixon and the John Birch Society) and white (very, very white),” slice of America. But “Chinese and Korean immigrants, and Asian-Americans from other states,” she wrote on the eve of the midterm election, “have made Irvine nearly half Asian.”