Comparing Big Blue and Big Red (states, that is)

As the “Great Sort” continues, Americans (driven in part by COVID policy, but also various economic and education concerns) are moving to states that better reflect those preferences.

The following chart was put together by Vance Ginn, an economist with Texas Public Policy Foundation (our much bigger, sister think tank in Texas). It compares and contrasts major “red” states Texas and Florida with major “blue” states California and New York. You can see the comparison for yourself here.

Furthermore, according to Ginn’s analysis it is actually non-native-born Texans who are keeping the state “red.” In other words, people who are attracted to things like a zero income tax, low tax burdens, and high levels of economic freedom have self-selected to move to Texas, thereby keeping those policies in place through their voting behavior.

Check out the additional polling data cited by Ginn here.

In the hard-fought Senate race between Senator ed Cruz (who had moved to Texas) and then- Representative Beto O’Rourke (a Texas native, natives preferred O’Rourke by plus-3 points, whereas movers favored Cruz by plus-15 points. Cruz won the race by 2.6 percentage points, meaning that if it were up to people who were Texans by birth, Cruz would have lost reelection.

Texas Public Policy Foundation (PPF) has conducted polls of registered voters to test attitudes between natives and non-natives. Its January 2020 poll of 800 registered voters found native Texans supported President Trump over Hillary Clinton by a 7-point margin compared to transplants, who supported Trump by a 12-point margin. TPPF’s polling found there was no statistical difference in voter preferences for either former President Trump or President Joe Biden in the 2020 election among natives versus non-natives.

PS: RGF is working on a similar analysis that adds New Mexico to the mix.