A lot of Democrats said that if Clinton lost the election, they would move to Canada, or New Zealand, or somewhere else altogether different.
Seems to me that what they should have done instead was move to the Midwest or the Southeast. After all, that is where Clinton lost the key states with high electoral vote counts.
To illustrate: Clinton won California with 5,860,714 votes to 3,151,821–a difference of 2,708,893 votes. Meanwhile, she lost Pennsylvania by 2,905,958 votes to only 2,841,280–a difference of 64,678 votes.
So, if 64,679 Democrats had been in Pennsylvania instead of California, she would have still won California handily, and also carried Pennsylvania.
That would get her to 248 electoral votes–still not enough to win. Can we take this any further?
Yes, we can. Clinton lost Michigan by 13,225 votes. So lets take 13,226 more Democrats out of California and move them into Michigan. Clinton is now winning California 5,782,810 to 3,151,821, and she’s winning Michigan and Pennsylvania as well. And she’s got 264 electoral votes. Still six shy of the number needed. Can we scrounge up those votes somewhere?
Clinton lost Florida by a score of 4,605,515 to 4,485,745, a difference of 119,770 votes. So, let’s do one more giant population shift, and move 119,771 voters from California to Florida. Clinton is now eking out a razor-thin 2.5 million vote win in California while winning Michigan, Pennsylvania and Florida. This puts her at 293 electoral votes–more than enough to win.
This is the the thing about urban cosmopolitanism vs. rural nationalism: the Democrats have more total voters, but they are concentrated in a few areas. The Republicans are spread out all over the place.
In theory, this could actually help the Democrats, since the number of electoral votes is based on the number of congressional districts, which is in turn based on population. But clearly, the size of California’s voter population is disproportionately large relative to their number of electoral votes. Moreover, the districts are only redrawn every ten years, so population changes that take place within that interval are not reflected.
The Democrats’ problem is that huge numbers of their voters are concentrated in a few states, where the marginal impact of a vote is low. If they were more spread out, they would likely have better results.