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Less people means less clout for Illinois

December 20, 2018

The population of Illinois has declined for the past several years. That’s nothing new.

But a development from the latest U.S. Census figures causes increasing alarm, and it’s something that can be identified in the simplest of terms.

From the 12-month period beginning in July 2017 and ending in June 2018, Illinois lost 45,116 people, a drop of .026 percent from the previous year.

That decrease means Illinois has dropped off the list of the five most populous states, replaced by Pennsylvania in the No. 5 spot.

Illinois now is sixth overall, also behind California, Texas, Florida and New York. Moreover, it is the only state among the two dozen most populous to lose residents. Louisiana, the 25th most populous state in the union, also had a slight population decrease.

What does this mean? Less clout on the national level. When any state loses population, it also stands to lose seats in the U.S. Congress. It also brings a loss of attention and prestige that seemingly goes to the larger states.

Illinois now has lost population for five straight years. It’s a trend we can’t afford to let continue. Whether it be improving the business climate, lowering taxes or other alternatives, something has to give.

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