widely cited Congressional Density Index (CDI) - which breaks down congressional districts into six density-based categories (Ranging from "Pure Rural" to "Pure Urban") - and
2012 and 2016
Presidential election data
, we looked at what the 2018 Midterms told us about density's increasingly important relationship with congressional districts and partisan politics.
f the 43¹
House seat pickups in 2018, nearly two-thirds of Democratic flips were found in suburban district
Conversely, factoring in Republicans flipping Minnesota's 8
Congressional District, Democrats only netted one seat in the most rural district classification. And while congressional Democrats' highest average shift in 2018 relative to 2016 was found in rural districts, this is because these districts so dramatically underperformed historical benchmarks in 2016 - as opposed to
Democrats making any significant inroads with rural voters. In fact, congressional Democrats actually lost ground in rural districts in 2018 relative to Obama's 2012 margins.
In addition to supplying Democrats with the majority of their newly-held seats, suburban districts have also experienced sizable shifts from 2012
2016, with suburban districts even further expanding their already-considerable gains from 2016 to 2018.