US population approaches 310M, Congress heads south


308,745,538. That’s how many people the Census Bureau was able to count in its 2010 tally. Although it represents almost a 10% increase over the 2000 total – the actual figure is 9.7% — it is said to be the slowest growth rate since the Great Depression. But it does indicate changes coming on Capitol Hill.

The preponderance of change benefitted the west over the east, and the south over the north. The overriding tendency was to feed electoral votes to states that tend to vote Republican.

Although new congressional districts will be formed in those red states, it doesn’t necessarily mean as much in terms of the ultimate balance of power in the House itself, since Democratic states faced with eliminating a district can do their best to engineer the change in their own favor and squeeze a Republican out of Congress.

But it clearly is better to be adding districts than eliminating them.

States gaining seats include:

+4 Texas

+2 Florida

+1 Washington

+1 Nevada

+1 Utah

+1 Arizona

+1 Georgia

+1 South Carolina

States losing seats include:

-2 Ohio

-2 New York

-1 Michigan

-1 Iowa

-1 Missouri

-1 Illinois

-1 Louisiana

-1 Pennsylvania

-1 Massachusetts

-1 New Jersey

RBR-TVBR observation: Redistricting can happen in any state, but it must happen in those states gaining or losing seats in the House of Representatives. They either create a free-for-all battle for a brand new seat, or often, they pit two incumbents against one another. In other words, they create battleground cash-generators in either case.