by Jason Williams, Sat Oct 02, 2010 at 09:53:45 PM EDT
Swing State Project has an easy to wade through breakdown of the new reapportionment model from Election Data Services -- complete with previous year trends -- showing New York losing not one but two seats.
EDS's model -- a mix in part of population estimates and Post Office change of address lists -- and record make a convincing case.
But George Mason's Michael P. McDonald argues New Yorkers shouldn't break out their boundary drawing markers just yet:
This new report predicts New York losing a second seat, apparently to Florida, which now gains two. One other noteworthy change in the fight between Minnesota and Missouri to retain a seat, Minnesota now would keep all their seats and Missouri would lose one.
There is an important flaw to the EDS study that a close read of the report reveals, and that affects its conclusions.
The EDS report uses ESRI's July 1, 2010, population estimates, while the population numbers that will be used to conduct congressional apportionment are from April 1, 2010. Three months may not seem like a big deal; however, populations in states like Florida and Texas are growing very quickly. We can turn the clock back on the ESRI data by linearly interpolating the July 1, 2009, and July 1, 2010, estimates to produce an April 1, 2010, estimate. When we do, New York no longer loses a second seat. In fact, these reconfigured numbers suggest that Florida still gains a second seat at the expense of Texas, which was expected to gain four seats but now only gains three. (This adjustment also continues to have Missouri losing one seat and Minnesota losing none.)
Actual data won't be available until early december and, as McDonald points out, projections are never dead on.
Also worth noting: if EDS's projected Texas gains prove solid, heavy growth in areas like Houston and the possible takeover of the legislature by Democrats would no doubt influence the color of the final maps. A new seat here is something Democrats would gladly trade up for.
Good stuff on redistricting and the governors races via WaPo's Aaron Blake.