More on the this from FiveThirtyEight which should help Democrats….
With the release of block-level data from the 2020 census, we now have a much clearer picture of how and where the U.S. population has grown — and shrunk — over the past 10 years. And while Republicans are largely setting the terms of the redistricting process that will ensue from this announcement, the data throws a much-needed lifeline to Democrats.
It’s not because of the country’s increasing racial diversity, though. Sure, under current electoral coalitions (where white voters are more likely to vote Republican and voters of color are more likely to vote Democratic), it’s arguably better for Democrats if the nonwhite population grows. But even in a country where only 58 percent of residents are non-Hispanic white, the 2020 presidential election was still very competitive. And electoral coalitions can change — for instance, Republicans may continue to gain groundamong nonwhite voters in future elections.
Instead, the good news for Democrats came in which parts of the country gained and lost population since the 2010 census. Despite the country’s overall population increasing by 7.4 percent, rural areas — the reddest parts of the country — have steadily lost residents over the past 10 years. The average county with a FiveThirtyEight urbanization index below 81 lost 3.1 percent of its population between 2010 and 2020. This encompasses the 1,430 most rural counties in America — 1,302 of which voted for former President Donald Trump in 2020, and only 127 of which voted for President Biden.
By contrast, the fastest-growing parts of the country are the suburbs. The average county with an urbanization index between 11 and 13 (spanning from sparse suburban areas like Roanoke County, Virginia, to dense suburban areas like Union County, New Jersey) grew by 9.6 percent between 2010 and 2020. Most of these counties (194 out of 264) voted for Biden, and if the trends of the 2018 and 2020 elections continue, they will only get bluer….