A closer look at the Pew population numbers

The Pew Center released population growth numbers earlier this week with a fair amount of media coverage. New Mexico is growing more slowly than any state west of Kansas.

As usual, we at the RGF wanted to take a closer look at Pew’s information. Here is the map with relevant population numbers. Americans continue to move south and west. They’re just not coming to New Mexico in numbers anything like other states are seeing. More interesting to us even than our lagging the rest of the west is that New Mexico is the only Western state growing slower than the median overall growth rate for each of the 50 states.  What would be even more interesting is to pull out retirees and young people and see who is coming to the Land of Enchantment as opposed to who is leaving.

It’s easy to see that the last decade has been tough for New Mexico. But, with oil and gas revenues boosting the budget, it will be easy for politicians and the public to remain complacent.



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7 Replies to “A closer look at the Pew population numbers”

  1. Has anyone done a deeper dive into New Mexico’s population trends? We know out-migration is roughly matched by births to keep the population more or less stable. It’s a good guess that people leaving the state are educated, working-age folks who are not government employees. How has this changed the age/income breakdown, public vs private workforce, retiree vs. working, median income, etc.? And how are these demographic shifts changing the electorate?

  2. Adding to Mr. McClure’s comment, there was an article in the Journal this week stating that Albuquerque’s minority population is now 60% of 550,000 (330,000)whereas in 1980, it was 40% of about 300,000 (120,000). This enormous increase makes it unlikely that the first Congressional district will ever again elect a Republican such as Steve Schiff or Heather Wilson. I have always been of the cynical belief that the major reason that NM has a number of sanctuary locales and why we were one of just two states to give full unrestricted driver’s licenses to illegals, was to flood the state with illegals from Latin America to preserve the state’s Hispanic majority. The Dem powers at be in the state saw what the Anglo invasion did to Arizona, politically, and did not want the same result in NM. They have succeeded.

    1. However, Deb Haaland’s politics of exclusion may alienate a lot of people and help Janice Arnold-Jones. We can hope… See Paul’s post of June 18.

  3. I do not think having a lot of minorities is a bad thing. Most are hardworking, patriotic Americans deluded somehow into believing the progressive lies of the Democrats. Like most liberal, high tax States, we are losing population. That could be good for Congressional representation in the long run as Blues get less Reps than Reds. However, counting illegals as part of the population toward how many representatives go to the House is what I worry about. That would make up for the loss of citizens and would be unfair because illegals would be influencing our country even without voting.

  4. The state has had several opportunities to draw retired military to the state with lowered taxes or decreased taxes based on disability.

    By making retired pay tax exempt or granting a waiver on real estate taxes, it would put NM in with several states like Florida & Texas that give benefits to military retirees.

    1. Mark, I appreciate the comment. This is something that RGF has wrestled with over the years. On one hand we support reducing tax burdens on New Mexicans of all walks of life, but we really don’t like to exempt one group or another from taxation. In this case military veterans. It is not that we would outright oppose such a move and it could rebound to bring a more conservative/entrepreneurial group to our state. But, I suspect that the Democrats who control the Legislature also see an increased number of military retirees as a political threat and that is why it fails to gain traction.

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