New U.S. Census figures suggest that, for the first time in history, the Democratic state of California could lose a seat in Congress.
New state census data up to July 1 shows that the population in the warmest part of the U.S. (Sun Belt) continues to move from the North and Midwest to the South and Southwest, which could help states that voted for Republicans in recent years.
While other Sunbelt states may gain representation in Congress, the Wall Street Journal reported Monday that California, once a symbol of the nation’s westward growth, will likely lose a seat.
Losing one of its 53 seats “would also mean the loss of one vote in the electoral college” to determine the presidency, Capitol Weekly noted earlier this year.
The Journal reported that California would lose political influence along with other cold Northeastern and Midwestern states.
Click here to explore some of the reason that people left California.
According to the numbers, Texas is likely to gain two seats in Congress and Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Montana, North Carolina, and Oregon are expected to gain one each. Eight states are expected to lose a seat: California, Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and West Virginia.
The actual estimate of population redistribution will take place in December 2020, with details worked out in 2021. Each state will redraw its legislative maps, and those with more than one seat in Congress will also redraw their districts.
The shift in political power from the Northeast and Midwest to the Southeast and Southwest is the result of residents moving to states with hot climates, strong job growth, cheaper housing and, in some cases, lower taxes, the Journal reported.
The likely loss of representation would occur despite California’s fervent rejection of President Donald Trump’s proposal to add a question to the Census, asking respondents whether or not they are U.S. citizens.
California and other states opposed the measure because they feared they might lose seats in Congress if the number of U.S. citizens rather than the number of residents was taken into account. Because of Democratic policies and ‘sanctuary city’ status, California is a major destination for immigration, including illegal immigration.