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Posts published in “Day: December 24, 2015”

First take/another bubble

New population estimates, for mid-decade, are out from the Census, and there's some real indication here that Oregon could be headed for an additional congressional seat.

That would put Oregon in a select category, since only six states now are on track to gain seats (and electoral college votes). Texas would gain three and Florida two, and the single-seat gainers would be Arizona, Colorado, North California - and Oregon. From the looks of the chart, Oregon is the closest to the edge. A population slowdown in the rest of the decade could cause it to fall off, but this is the strongest position it's been in for a while.

(Nine states each are projected to lose one seat.)

Oregon was close to a pick-up at the start of this decade, but it didn't gain one, and Washington did. That seems to have used up Washington's pickup options for this time.

From a report on this in Daily Kos:

There are only minor changes from EDS's projections last year, when the firm predicted (albeit with less confidence) that California and Virginia would both gain seats. This time, interestingly, EDS says that whether you look at the longer-term from 2010 to 2015, or whether you use a shorter-term trend such as from 2013 to 2015 or just 2014 to 2015, all of their projections now come out the same way—something that wasn't true a year ago.

Incidentally, if these forecasts hold, the net effect on the Electoral College would be quite small: States that Barack Obama carried in 2012 would lose three electoral votes, while states he lost would gain three. However, two major swing states would see their fortunes continue to diverge, with Ohio losing yet another electoral vote and Florida gaining two.

In Oregon, which party would tend to gain from an additional seat? A question to ponder that just might get relevant. - rs