Don’t Let the Door Hit You on the Way Out

Matthew G. Saroff
2 min readDec 6, 2023

It appears that Republicans in Washington State are fleeing the “Socialist Hell” to go to Idaho.

I wonder how they are going to feel when they realize that Idaho, unlike Washington State, has an incom tax:

At first, the ads seemed like a pandemic-era curiosity, a niche political pitch playing on the red state, blue state divide.

“Escape liberal hell,” counseled one sales video from a Boise, Idaho, real estate agent. “Here are seven reasons conservatives flock to Idaho.”

“Time is not on your side, flee the city NOW before the coming collapse!” read another ad for 5 acres in Moyie Springs, Idaho, listed for $259,000 by a Sandpoint, Idaho, company called Black Rifle Real Estate. (Motto: “Ready. Aim. Move.”)

The idea that people would pick up and move solely for politics has seemed like a stretch. Moving for a job, schools, space, a rural lifestyle, yes. People relocate for all sorts of reasons — nearly 250,000 moved here from another U.S. state last year, with 258,000 going the other way, the Census Bureau says.

But now, there’s solid evidence that some people really are migrating over partisanship.

This past week, Idaho released a database of voters who have moved into that state, along with where they came from and what political party they signed up for when they got there. In Washington, we don’t register by party — everybody is an independent voter. In Idaho, you generally have to affiliate with a party to vote in the primaries, so party choice is right on the government’s registration form.

A bunch or right wingers are going to a remote rural area in pursuit of a libertarian utopian dream.

Well, that should end well.

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