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Political scientists too often look at the South as a region that's either (a.) monolithic, a voting bloc that doesn't waver, or (b.) a place so cemented in conservatism that it's a waste of time during campaigns.

Some of that is true. The South, by and large, is conservative. But it's hardly monolithic, especially when minority turnout is high and the Democratic Party fields candidates worthy of consideration. Doug Jones, in other words.

That said, consider this from a political scientist writing in The Washington Post:

Recent "Democratic victories resulted in large part from high turnout and overwhelming support and activism among black voters. But recent research suggests that Democrats are also benefiting from another phenomenon — whites who have moved to the South. Since World War II, Americans have been migrating South. That’s picked up in recent years, aided by a relatively strong economy and — as anyone north of the Mason-Dixon line this week will appreciate — balmy winters. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 10 of the fastest-growing U.S. cities in 2016 were in the South, five in Texas."

We don't hear that often, do we? But it's true, and it's going to affect how national elections go in coming years if the Democrats field viable candidates. Still, there's the Deep South vs. the rest of the South to consider. And the South's conservative voting patterns overall won't change much.

The Post continues, "Patterns of migration to all Southern states are not the same. The people moving to Virginia or North Carolina may not have the same political loyalties as those moving to Alabama and Mississippi. So how migration affects the political landscape is likely to differ from one state to the next."

-- Phillip Tutor