An analysis of the “blue-state diaspora” suggests this has helped Democrats in presidential elections:
Over the last few decades, residents of many traditionally liberal states have moved to states that were once more conservative. And this pattern has played an important role in helping the Democratic Party win the last two presidential elections and four of the last six. The growth of the Latino population and the social liberalism of the millennial generation may receive more attention, but the growing diaspora of blue-state America matters as well.
The blue diaspora has helped offset the fact that many of the nation’s fastest-growing states are traditionally Republican. You can think of it as a kind of race: Population growth in these Republican states is reducing the share of the Electoral College held by traditionally Democratic states. But Democratic migration has been fast enough, so far, to allow the party to overcome the fact that the Northeast and industrial Midwest contain a smaller portion of the country’s population than they once did…
The spread of people born in New York State offers a particularly telling example: Of the 20 million Americans alive today who were born in New York, nearly one in six now live in the South. That would have been almost unthinkable 50 years ago, when the share was one in 25…
The first thing we noticed was a major blue-to-red shift: Since 2000, the blue-born population in red states has grown by almost a quarter, to 11.5 million, or 12 percent of the states’ total population.
The paradox here is that this trend could be positive or negative depending on the level of analysis. Typically, population loss is seen as a negative thing. If there are large numbers of people leaving New York City, we might ask whether something is wrong in NYC. Actually, New York City may not be a good example because it always tends to draw people but think instead of liberal Midwestern cities, places like Chicago or Detroit or Cleveland, that have lost population and this has been tied to problems within those cities. Yet, the spreading out of liberals could work well on a national scale if those places losing liberals aren’t filled up with conservatives and the liberals who move weaken the conservative advantages elsewhere.
It is hard to imagine that any of this could be planned but I could imagine some interesting future scenarios where political parties encourage enough people to move, perhaps temporarily, so they can vote in a different place to help swing an election.