In an interview with Sean Hannity last week, Gov. Gavin Newsom (D‑CA) claimed the idea of an exodus from California is a myth. But the data tell a far different story.
Let’s start with the basics: Between April 2020 and July 2022, California’s population decreased by more than 500,000 people. And when considering net domestic migration, 700,000 more people moved out of California than moved in during that period.
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Newsom pointed out that other states such as Mississippi and Louisiana lost more people per capita than California, suggesting all is fine in the Golden State. But the truth is that comparing these numbers to other states does not make the picture any brighter for California.
In 2022, California had the worst raw domestic net migration numbers of any state, losing almost 350,000 people. When one looks at the number as a portion of the total population, California is still in the bottom 10, losing 0.3% of its residents.
Moreover, as Manhattan Institute fellow Daniel Di Martino pointed out, it is important to consider that the states Newsom mentioned were never particularly stellar in terms of attracting new people. It is, therefore, not necessarily a surprise to see their placement on the list. California, on the other hand, was once the most desirable location in America, the epicenter of the American dream. But there has been a profound ch …