Conservative residents of California are leaving the state, or are considering doing so, at an unprecedented rate, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Just over half of California’s registered voters say they are seriously contemplating leaving the state, according to a joint survey conducted by the Times and UC Berkeley Institute of Governmental Studies. Forty percent of those considering a move are conservative, while 14 percent are liberal.
Judy Stark, 71, a former resident of Modesto, California, told the Times she and her husband were fed up with high taxes, lax local law enforcement and illegal immigration. Stark and her husband Richard have since settled near Dallas, Texas.
“We’re moving to redder pastures,” Stark said. “We’re getting with people who believe in the same political agenda that we do: America first, Americans first, law and order.”
The state lost over one million residents in 2018 to internal U.S. migration, according to California’s Legislative Analyst’s Office. That number comprises 2.5 percent of the state’s population. While there are people moving into California, most of those have higher incomes and settle in the San Fransisco Bay area.
Most of the outgoing residents leave for Texas. The Starks managed to buy a home in Texas for about $300,000, half of what they would pay in California.
To buy a house there [El Segundo, California] is insane,” said Marie Bailey, whose family moved California to Prosper, Texas. “It’s like $1 million. Why are we working our butts off for a fixer-upper in El Segundo? We’re just working, working, working — and for what?”
Bailey said she felt she had to hide her right-wing political beliefs in California. She works as a realtor, and a Facebook group she started called “Move to Texas From California!” has 14,000 members.