Republican Counties Saw Baby Boom in 2016 After Trump Election
(Bloomberg) -- Mothers in Republican-leaning counties saw a baby boost over their Democratic counterparts after former President Donald Trump’s surprise 2016 victory.
In the year after Trump’s win, Republican-leaning counties saw an increase in fertility relative to Democratic-leaning ones, according to a paper from the National Bureau of Economic Research. This equaled a 1.1 percentage-point difference in annual births, or roughly 23,000 excess babies in GOP counties that the authors tie to optimism over the election’s results.
The effects also continued for the following two years for which data were available.
What’s more, the gap was bigger in heavily partisan counties. The fertility gap between extreme Republican and extreme Democratic counties was 2.6 percentage points, according to the authors, Gordon Dahl and William Mullins of the University of California San Diego and Runjing Lu of the University of Alberta.
Hispanic mothers also saw significantly fewer births than non-Hispanics, the authors wrote, noting some of the former president’s harsh rhetoric toward immigrants during his campaign.
For some context, there was no partisan effect on fertility after former President Barack Obama’s 2008 victory, although the onset of the Great Recession complicated the data. The authors found some evidence that relative fertility fell in Democratic counties after former President George W. Bush’s 2000 win.
The states with the highest birth rates shortly after the election were Utah, Alaska and the Dakotas.
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