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People are only just finding out that 1 in 3 Americans live in just four states

People are only just finding out that 1 in 3 Americans live in just four states

You might imagine that the US population is fairly evenly distributed, but you would be incorrect

If you think that the population of the US is evenly distributed, then it's time to think again.

On election night, you might have heard someone questioning why one party seems to command so much of the vote despite such seemingly small geographic areas.

The answer, of course, is that those areas have a far higher population density.

As for the vast swathes of red in rural areas, land simply doesn't vote. But the distribution of the US population is even more skewed than you might think.

In fact, a third of the people living in the US live in one of just four of the most populous states.

Unbelievably, if you live in the US, there's a one in three chance you live in one of these four states, as of 2023.

So, which states are these?

Which states have the highest populations?
Pavlo Stavnichuk / Getty

California tops the list as the most populous in the country, with a total population of just under 39 million.

Next on the list is Texas, which despite having a population of 30.5 million people also has the lowest population density of the ten most populous states by some margin.

Because you know, Texas is enormous.

Next we have Florida, with a population of 22.6 million and the highest density of the top ten states.

That's population density, just to be clear.

Finally, we have New York state, with a population of 19.5 million people.

An incredibly high combined total population

Between them they have a population of 111.6 million people, which is just under one third of the US population of 336.1 million.

People have taken to the comments to share their surprise at the population distribution.

One wrote: "Wow, that's a lot of Americans packed into just four states," as another posted: "These 4 states have populations larger than a lot of countries."

And a third replied: "The population distribution is incredible, huh?"

Four of the US states account for nearly a third of the population.
Denys / Getty

The downside of a higher population

Living in a state with a higher population can have some unfortunate consequences when it comes to elections, particularly with the electoral college.

If you divide the number of electoral college votes by the population, it shows that a vote in some states is worth 'less' than in others.

For example, California has a population of just under 39 million, and 54 electoral college votes. That means that for every electoral vote, there are approximately 722,200 votes.

But if you lived in Wyoming, with three electoral college votes and a population of around 578,000, you only have around 192,000 votes per electoral college vote.

In California, you need around 3.76 times more actual votes to get one electoral college vote than in Wyoming.

Now that doesn't seem fair!

Featured Image Credit: Getty Stock Images / Mario Tama/Getty Images

Topics: News, US News, Politics