Reapportionment Day! (Update: Oregon stays at five seats. Washington gets a tenth.)

Kari Chisholm FacebookTwitterWebsite

Today's the day. At 8 a.m., Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke will announce the first results of the 2010 Census -- the total state population counts.

Locke will also announce the results of reapportionment - how many members of Congress (and electoral votes) each state will have for the next decade. Will Oregon get a sixth seat? Will Washington get a tenth?

In 2007 and 2008, it looked like Oregon was going to get a sixth seat. But by 2009, things weren't looking quite so good. That said, estimates are just estimates - and the only thing that counts is the actual nose count from April 2010.

So, here we go. In less than an hour, we'll have an answer - and I'll update right here.

Update, 8:22 a.m.: The press conference is underway. For the first time, America has officially crossed the 300 million population threshold. We are now at 308 million residents, up from 281 million. Nevada grew 35%, while Michigan shrank by 0.6%. Oregon grew 12%, while Washington grew 14%. (The entire nation grew by 9.7%.) That puts Oregon at 3,848,606 residents, up from 3,421,399.

Update, 8:25 a.m.: It's official. Oregon will remain at five seats for a fourth decade. Washington, after just 20 years at nine seats, will move up to ten seats in Congress.

Update, 8:36 a.m.: Here's the full list: Texas gained 4 seats. Florida gained 2 seats. Gaining one seat each: Arizona, Georgia, Nevada, South Carolina, Washington and Utah. New York and Ohio each lost two seats. Losing one seat each: Illinois, Iowa, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

Keep in mind that this will also have a huge impact on the 2012 presidential race. The states won by Barack Obama lost seven electoral votes, while the states won by John McCain gained those seven electoral votes.

Update, 8:43 a.m.: Starting in February, the Census will start to release detailed block-by-block counts that will make it possible for the Legislature to redraw both the congressional and legislative maps.

Update, 8:50 a.m.: The 435th seat was assigned to Minnesota. The state that just missed out on another seat was North Carolina -- by just 15,000 residents. (The census director noted that that's the largest gap between 435 and 436 in a half-century.) No word just yet on how far down the list Oregon-6 appeared.

Update, 8:57 a.m.: The entire data dump is here.

Update, 9:02 a.m.: I just ran the population numbers through a reapportionment calculation. Oregon-6 came in at seat #442, or seven seats outside the threshold.

Based on the 2008 estimate, we were as high as #437. By my calculations then, if we had grown in 2009 and 2010 as we had in 2000-2008, we would have been at #435 - picking up that sixth seat. But by 2009, those same estimates had us down to #438. At that time, almost exactly a year ago, I wrote this - "If the 2009-2010 growth pattern matches this last year, we'll drop even further - down to #442." - and sure enough, that's exactly what happened.

That's it for the news. On the jump for more nerdiness about population numbers...

Some notes on the numbers:

And because it's never too soon to start speculating, here's some thoughts on the 2020 census:

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    At least 40 years stuck at five seats, eh?

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      Yup. Basically this means that we're growing roughly inline with the country (though as noted above, just slightly faster - which is why we've been creeping up the chart.)

      Other states are in the same boat. Minnesota and Maryland have had 8 since 1960, Alabama's been at 7 since 1970, etc.

      Tennessee is interesting -- they've been at 9 seats since 1930, except in the 1940s when they had 10, and the 1970s when they dropped to 8.

      In all, six states have been entirely unchanged since 1930; seven are unchanged since 1960; two since 1970; four since 1980; and five since 1990.

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    Here is a nice list of states taken from another list.

    Above 435 is population they would have needed to have to be in spot 435. Below 435 is how much population they would have had to lose to be in spot 436.

    Seat State Population
    426 Texas 808,318
    427 Pennsylvania 331,371
    428 California 826,973
    429 Georgia 161,785
    430 South Carolina 50,722
    431 Florida 113,952
    432 Washington 26,608
    433 Texas 99,183
    434 California 117,877
    435 Minnesota 8,738
    436 North Carolina 15,753
    437 Missouri 15,028
    438 New York 107,057
    439 New Jersey 63,276
    440 Montana 10,002
    441 Louisiana 48,858
    442 Oregon 41,487
    443 Ohio 144,928
    444 Virginia 122,192
    445 California 653,688
    446 Illinois 270,086

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      Of course, some of these numbers could play together. If Michele Bachmann had been more successful in convincing her fellow Minnesotans to skip the census, North Carolina would have needed fewer additional residents to jump up into #435.

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    Ack that formatted badly.

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    Apparently Dems see a silver lining in the apparent gains in red states. Much of that new population gain comes from Latino and African American Voters who are heavily Democratic. For example they expect to pick up at least two of the four new seats on Texas, and perhaps the new seat on NV because of the enlarged Latino vote in Las Vegas, the same people who carried Harry Reid to victory.

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    Hey, one last item I just added up into the post for y'all to chew on:

    Since Oregon came so close to getting another seat, but fell short, it's worth noting that that means that Oregon will have more people per congressional district than many states. In fact, we'll have 766,215 people per member of Congress - while the national average will be 710,000. (OF course, Montana still has just one member - representing 989,415. And Rhode Island managed to get two - each representing 526,284. Unless and until we start redrawing state lines based on population, this is always going to happen.)

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    Kari, I think there's a slight problem here:

    Update, 8:36 a.m.: Here's the full list: Texas gained 4 seats. Florida gained 2 seats. Gaining one seat each: Arizona, Florida ...

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    We fell short because people left because of Measures 66 and 67, right? (;>))

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      No, Chuck. We fell short because so many low-income illegal immigrants moved to Texas because they don't have an income tax there. :-P

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        And let us not forget their high-class schools there, with cutting edge education practices like cutting out Founding Fathers who they don't like.

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