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Political Editors / Nov. 7, 2019

California Conservatives Departing in Droves

Since 2007, more than a million people have moved out of the Golden State.

The Los Angeles Times recently reported that conservatives are moving out of California at an unprecedented rate. The Times cited a UC Berkeley study revealing that “just over half of California’s registered voters have considered leaving the state” and that “Republicans and conservative voters were nearly three times as likely as their Democratic or liberal counterparts to seriously have considered moving.” The reasons conservatives gave for wanting to leave were high taxes, cost of living, and an antagonizing, one-sided political culture.

From 2007 to 2016, California lost more than one million residents, or 2.5% of its population. In 2017 alone, 63,175 Californians moved to Texas, the top destination for residents moving out of the Golden State.

High cost of living, thanks in large part to Democrat policies and regulations, has been one of the biggest factors in driving people out. “To buy a house [in El Segundo near Santa Monica] is insane. It’s like $1 million,” complained former California resident Marie Bailey. “Why are we working our butts off for a fixer-upper in El Segundo? We’re just working, working, working — and for what?”

But the largest factor in leading conservative residents to consider leaving California is the state’s increasingly intolerant and authoritarian state government and culture. In many ways, the state’s Democrat officials are straining at gnats — exemplified by the state’s anti-straw regulation — while swallowing camels, as officials loudly declare California a sanctuary state for illegal aliens. While officials continue to pander to leftist social-justice zealots, the streets of San Francisco and Los Angeles are covered in feces and syringes, courtesy of a burgeoning homeless population. And then there are the wildfires consuming vast swaths of the state, a problem exacerbated by the state’s ecofascist policies. The response to the fires? Intentional power blackouts.

In times past, California was one of the most welcoming and freest states in the union. Millions flocked to the state seeking to gain from the myriad of opportunities available, and California grew significantly because of it, becoming known the world over. However, those days seem long forgotten, as paradise is being ruined by a regulatory state intent on controlling the populace and a population bent on crushing dissenting opinion rather than espousing the virtues of Liberty. Is it any wonder conservative Californians are leaving?

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