Redrawing The Lines

by Patrick Appel

The Census numbers are out and there isn't much good news for Congressional Democrats. Weigel's redistricting analysis:

This is about as bad as it could get for Democrats, and as good as it could get for Republicans. The next GOP presidential candidate gets six free electoral votes from South Carolina, Texas, Utah. The Democratic caucus in the House is about to see internal warfare in the rust belt and northeast, as their members are forced into Thunderdome battle for the diminished number of seats. Only in Illinois, I think, will the Democrats be able to create a map that hurts the GOP's newly elected members and takes back a seat or two.

Nate Silver looks at the big picture:

Essentially all of the fastest-growing districts are in inland areas south of the Mason-Dixon line, or are west of the Continental Divide. Many are in areas that demographers describe as ‘exurbs’: newly developing areas that are located relatively far perhaps a 30- or 60-minute drive from cities like Phoenix, Dallas, Houston, Las Vegas, Charlotte or Atlanta, and that attract an upscale mix of commuters, families and retirees. Although most major American cities are no longer losing population on the contrary, at least 20 of the 25 largest cities are likely to have gained population in the 2010 Census compared with 2000 they are not growing as fast as the exurbs, and therefore stand to lose proportionally, because the number of seats in Congress is fixed.