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By Selane @SummerEllenLane


The Truth about the California Exodus

A published Op/Ed

By Summer Lane

You’ve heard the line: “Don’t turn my red state blue.” Or, “Californians and New Yorkers are NOT welcome in my red state.” In fact, as I was working last week, covering a Save America rally hosted by President Donald J. Trump in Conroe, Texas, I noticed a few of the pre-rally speakers making disparaging comments about Californians who are fleeing the communistic policies of the Golden State and seeking refuge in strongholds for freedom and individual liberty, like Texas and Florida. Yet as I heard the comments decrying Californians who supposedly bring progressive policies with them into red states, I wondered: is that true? So, I did what I usually do…I dug in and did some research.

As a red-blooded California voter myself, I frequently tell people that, as a journalist and career writer and columnist, I am working “behind enemy lines” here in the Central Valley. In California, we all know that we not only suffer under the burden of a leftist-driven legislature and radical progressive governorship, but we also bear the brunt of disastrous immigration policies. In fact, according to the U.S. Customs and Border Protection, under the embarrassingly absent Biden administration, America was flooded in 2021 with just shy of 2 million more illegal migrants…many coming to a city near you, thanks to California’s reputation for providing sanctuary for those seeking to enter our country without abiding by our laws.

Interestingly enough, California is perhaps the most geographically diverse place in the United States, boasting a wide variety of climates, from the burning Mojave Desert and the snow-laden Sierras, to the sparkling Pacific Ocean and the fertile farmland of the Central Valley. Thanks to its diversity, which has created a super economy ranging from agricultural goods to booming tourism, it’s no surprise that California has one of the largest economies in the entire world, and yet, it is also one of the most corrupt and poorly-run states in the country.

Californians in the Central Valley eagerly point to disastrously-led cities like San Francisco and Los Angeles as the source of their woes, and indeed, this certainly does seem to be the case. These behemoth population centers notoriously vote for socialistic policies and politicians like clockwork, therefore subjecting the entire state to damaging ideologically-based legislation.

In light of the coronavirus pandemic, for example, Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) has odiously held on to his endless “emergency” powers in the state of California, haphazardly attempting to enforce ludicrous lockdowns, mask mandates, and vaccine requirements for California citizens and workers. In December 2021, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) reinstated an indoor mask mandate, which is slated to expire on February 15th…but we all know how that goes. Despite the hard, scientific data that clearly says masks do not protect anyone from transmitting or catching Covid, we are still being asked to wear muzzles like animals, dogmatically falling into line with what the “experts” tell us. SF Gate even reported in Dec. 2021 that CNN medical analyst Dr. Leana Wen said that masks have no place in preventing contracting Covid, and likened them to “facial decorations.”

And yet, in California, the bad policies seem to march ever onward, no matter how hard the millions of conservatives fight against them. This, of course, brings me to the reality that conservatives, who have fought long and hard against socialism in California, are finally packing up and leaving. This begs the question: are Californians who are taking flight in light of the horrendous policies in California fleeing to red states and corrupting them with blue-leaning policies? Personally, I believe this is untrue.

Let’s look at some statistics. Last year, it was reported that Floridian registered Republicans, for example, had surpassed Democrats for the first time in the state’s history. In 2021, Business Insider reported than an estimated 900 people were moving to Florida every day. Additionally, Texas has become an alluring location for freedom-loving Americans to relocate to, coming in a close second to Florida as a relocation area for inner-state migration patterns, according to It stands to reason that, as states like Florida grow redder along with this massive influx of new citizens, there is a causal relationship to be found therein, which suggests that there is indeed a correlation between those two things: voters moving out of blue states and moving to Florida, for example, and Republican voters outpacing Democrats like never before.

Here, I present a contrary theory to what you normally hear: I think red voters are fleeing blue states and turning red states redder. I think that, when you hear about Californians turning Texas blue, what politicians really are referring to are the California-based corporations who come to Texas seeking looser tax regulations and laws, bringing their leftist socialist doctrine with them. I think that, based on the data available to us regarding inner-state migration, we can see that blue states are not feeding blue policies into red states. If anything, escapees from the hellish economic and social landscape of California are contributing to keeping places like Texas and Florida permanent and irrevocable bastions of conservatism.

GOP establishment politicians need to watch their rhetoric when they are lambasting Californians who are seeking refuge in states like Texas and be sure not to mock or tear down American citizens who are merely looking for a place to live in peace with their families. There is a big difference between a megalithic corporation relocating to Texas and a California family who wants to give their kids a chance to grow up safe and free.


U.S. Customs and Border Protection. (2022).

Sargent, Joshua. (2021). Experts Warn that cloth masks don’t work. SF Gate.

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