Marginal

On Apocalyptic talk. Let’s put two pieces of evidence together. On May 16, 2010, the Washington Post reported that “people are voting with their feet” and moving to counties and states that share their cultural and political viewpoints. As a result, “Many more states and counties are dominated by one-party supermajorities than in the past.”

Four days ago, the New York Times reported that, as of early next year, about three-quarters of the states will have their executive and legislative branches controlled by a single party:

One party will hold the governor’s office and majorities in both legislative chambers in at least 37 states, the largest number in 60 years and a significant jump from even two years ago.

Are our social and political divisions becoming increasingly regional as well as increasingly bitter? Are parts of the country finding less and less in common with other parts? Will the zeal of one-party rule on the state level combined with the U.S. Supreme Court’s current deference to the states (the Obamacare case restricted the federal government’s use of the U.S. Constitution’s commerce clause, for instance) eventually make living in a different state like living in a different country? Are we becoming as geographically polarized as we were just before our Civil War?