ANN ARBOR, Mich. – The Census Bureau announced Monday that Michigan would be losing a seat in Congress due to the census data.
There’s no denying Michigan’s importance in national politics, but due to the lost Congressional seat, there are some things at stake for how much Michigan may matter in the next big election.
The Census Bureau’s data show that Michigan’s population grew in the last 10 years, but not enough to hold onto one of the state’s 14 seats in Congress. For the last 40 years, Michigan has lost a seat every Census since 1980. During that time, Michigan has become a swing state -- a coveted prize in presidential politics, but could the road to the White House be closed when it comes to Michigan after losing a seat in Congress?
“Michigan is still an important swing state in an important region of the country in presidential races,” said Robert Yoon. “I don’t think that that will translate into a direct lack of interest in Michigan.”
Yoon is a lecturer at the University of Michigan and was CNN’s political research director for nearly 20 years.
“I think that the effect will more be in terms of the actual bread and butter, results in terms of what the representatives can do for the state and Congress,” Yoon said.
It’s not just Michigan. The rest of the Great Lakes Region also took a hit with Ohio, Pennsylvania and Illinois all lost a seat in Congress, but Yoon said the Rust Belt isn’t going anywhere any time soon.
“Michigan and Ohio are rivals in a lot of things, but demographically and in terms of the economy, the states of the Midwest have a lot in common. They have more in common than they don’t,” Yoon said. “When the states of the region are losing political power or losing a voice in Congress, that affects the whole region.”
We don’t know which district will be dropped. Yoon thinks it could be one of the two in Detroit or Dan Kildee’s district in the Thumb.
The state’s redistricting commission will meet later this week.