GOP Assemblyman Kevin Kiley wins key rural California congressional district race, but how far is it from Washington? The Golden State now has a congressional district with the lowest percentage of its population living in rural areas of any in the country. The district stretches between the Sacramento-San Joaquin Valley and the southern reaches of the Central Coast. Like many state legislatures located in the Pacific Coasts, the new district falls mostly within California’s rural heartland. Kiley, a Republican, was elected to Congress from the new district, earning him a top-tier seat. However, a closer look at this congressional district reveals a picture of congressional districts not unlike those seen across the country. The fact that this district is the lowest-populated congressional district in the country isn’t by itself surprising if one looks closely at the demographics of the district.
Income inequality, school quality and voter turnout are the three major issues that have been identified, with the former two being the most persistent problems faced in the nation today. The most pressing of these issues remains that of income inequality. To understand what happens when income inequality is too great, it is important for us to look at the demographics of the district.
A New Congressional District
The Pacific Coast states of California and Oregon are each home to the most important urban centers in the country. According to a 2010 American Community Survey (ACS) report, the United States’ most critical cities are Sacramento, the state capital in the Central Valley, and Portland, the hub of the Oregon coastal metropolis. These two jurisdictions will both play essential roles for California as it attempts to solve the state’s budget crisis.
Sacramento has long been a major cultural and economic center in the state. It has been at the forefront of issues as diverse as the rise of the University of California and the California State University system, or the state’s move away from the public education model which dominated the state’s schools. Today, Sacramento is a dynamic center for