Census Earthquake: Red State Gains, Blue State Losses in House

Texas and Florida, two solid red states, are set to gain seats in the House of Representatives, while big blue states, including New York and California, are expected to lose seats.

California is predicted to lose one seat, with New York dropping at least one seat and possibly two.

The big winners are Florida and Texas. Florida is set to win two seats, while Texas is set to gain three seats. Arizona, Colorado, Montana, North Carolina, and Oregon are poised to gain one seat each.

Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and West Virginia are predicted to lose a seat each, with Alabama remaining the same or losing a seat.

Population shifts are behind the gains and losses of seats. Yet the loss or gain of seats are not the only results of these shifts.

Population changes also affect the number of Electoral College votes each state has. Electoral College votes are assigned based on the number of House members each state has, in addition to its two senators.

The release of the results of the 2020 census was supposed to be available earlier in the year but was delayed due to Covid-19.

2022 elections

Redistricting of congressional districts will be in effect in time for the 2022 election. Democrats control the House by a margin of 218-212, so redistricting could have a dramatic effect on the make-up of the House.

States gaining seats were mostly Republican-leaning. President Donald Trump held Montana, Florida, Texas, and North Carolina in the 2020 presidential election.

The census results will set the stage for a battle over redistricting. Changes to House seats, as well as redistricting, could dramatically shape the political climate in Washington D.C. for years to come.

Census data also is used to redraw electoral maps based on population growth, decline, and location shifts.

The 435 House seats and the Electoral College votes that select the president every four years are divvied up between the 50 states based on population.

Every state receives at least one seat in Congress. These provisions are established under the U.S. Constitution. Seats are reallocated every 10 years after the Census is completed.

These population shifts reflect the trend of growth in the West and South, while the Northeast and Midwest have seen stagnant or shrinking populations.