It is no secret that pro-growth policies — low taxes and a light regulatory burden — have propelled population growth in Texas and Florida while the opposite has occurred in California, Illinois, and New York. Elected officials’ response to COVID-19 likely accelerated this trend in 2020, with Florida and Texas netting more than half of the nation’s 1.15 million population increase from mid-2019 to mid-2020.
Each state has its own migration patterns, and these shift constantly in response to conditions and economic opportunities. The advent of reliable and affordable air conditioning, for example, opened the South to migrants from the North who sought to escape harsh winters. This is especially seen in the constant flow of retirees from New York and surrounding states to Florida and from the northern Midwest to Arizona. Also, states such as California and New York that have consistently lost population to other states have often more than made up for the loss through international