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(35,186 posts)
Fri Nov 24, 2023, 11:02 AM Nov 2023

The red state 'brain drain' is well underway -- here's why [View all]


The New Republic's Timothy Noah, in an article published on November 22, emphasizes that the "brain drain" from red states isn't something that may or may not happen in the future — it's already underway.

"Republican-dominated states are pushing out young professionals by enacting extremist conservative policies," Noah reports. "Abortion restrictions are the most sweeping example, but state laws restricting everything from academic tenure to transgender health care to the teaching of 'divisive concepts' about race are making these states uncongenial to knowledge workers."

Noah continues, "The precise effect of all this on the brain drain is hard to tease out from migration statistics because the Dobbs decision is still fairly new, and because red states were bleeding college graduates even before the culture war heated up. The only red state that brings in more college graduates than it sends elsewhere is Texas, but the evidence is everywhere that hard-right social policies in red states are making this dynamic worse."

Noah cites specific examples, including doctors Kate Arnold and Caroline Flint — a same-sex married couple who left deep red Oklahoma and moved to Washington, D.C. to get away from Republican anti-abortion and anti-contraception activities as well as book bans in their former state.


I read the long version at The New Republic, but snipped from this link, which summarizes the article.

If you have time, though, TNR's article is definitely worth the time as it covers so much of "how we got here": Example from TNR:


That changed with the 2010 election. In a historic realignment largely unrecognized at the time, the GOP won a majority of governorships and legislative chambers. Today, Republicans control a 52 percent majority of governorships and a 57 percent majority of state legislative bodies, and in 22 states Republicans enjoy a “trifecta,” meaning they control the governorship and both legislative chambers (or, in the case of Nebraska, a unicameral legislature). At the time Dobbs was handed down, Republicans enjoyed even greater reach, with trifectas in 23 states.


The article then goes on to tell how Trump has chased out any academic or educated leanings from the populace:


But with the arrival of Donald Trump, college graduates left the Republican fold for the foreseeable future. Trump dropped the Republican share to 44 percent in 2016 and 43 percent in 2020. If Trump wins the nomination in 2024, the GOP’s share of college voters could drop below 40, and I don’t see any of Trump’s challengers for the Republican nomination doing much better. It isn’t clear they even want to, because today’s GOP sees college graduates as the enemy.


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