The real estate website Redfin has a report based on an analysis of its search data indicating that people who live in Democrat-dominated counties are looking to escape to Republican-dominated counties, where housing is more affordable. From the Redfin blog:
In the first half of 2017, more people moved from blue (Democratic) counties to red (Republican) counties than from red to blue counties, according to data on Redfin.com user searches. Counties were classified as "blue" if the Democratic candidate for 2016 won by more than 20 percentage points and vice versa for "red" counties.
Overall, 7.4 percent more people moved out of blue counties than to them. Compare that with red counties, which saw about 1 percent more people moving in than moving out. Purple counties, where there's a more balanced share of Democrats and Republicans, saw 3.9 percent more migrants moving in than out.
Just looking at swing states—the most populous being Florida—the trend is even more pronounced. In these states, counties with more Democratic voters lost 9.2 percent more people than they gained while Republican counties gained 2.3 percent more than they lost. Swing counties in swing states saw 1.8 percent more people move in than out.
"As blue counties are becoming increasingly less affordable, we see a great number of residents moving to red counties where they can afford the lifestyle they want," said Redfin chief economist Nela Richardson....results are right in line with the latest county-to-county migration data published by the Census, which revealed that from 2011 to 2015, over 50 percent more migrants moved from blue to red counties than the other way around.
If Democrat-ruled counties want to retain population, they might consider relaxing their environmental, zoning, and labor regulations that inflate housing construction costs and restrict supply.
The Redfin data is about searches, not actual moves, so it might measure escape fantasies rather than actual departures. Or the results could be skewed by searches by people looking for second homes. Someone in Cambridge, Mass. looking at ski houses in New Hampshire, or someone in Brooklyn looking at farms in upstate New York, might contribute to that effect. If there is migration, the political effects are also hard to forecast. Redfin says "we see this as a sign of hope for a less divided country, where people with differing views gain better understanding and tolerance of each other through sheer proximity." That would be nice.