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View Poll Results: Of the Upper South states outside of the mountains, are they part of the Sun Belt?
Yes 12 35.29%
No 16 47.06%
Only parts of the non-Appalachian Upper South 6 17.65%
Voters: 34. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 06-11-2015, 06:43 AM
 
Location: Terramaria
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I've seen sources referencing the Sun Belt restricting states to the Deep South (along with the Southwest) based on many definitions. However, I've seen some sources expanding the Sun Belt as far north as the traditional northern boundary of the South (Mason-Dixon Line/Ohio River). Looking at one map, I see one that only has Snowbelt vs. Sunbelt that roughly crosses the 36^ 30' parallel, and gives you the perception that states like Virginia and Kentucky have long, cold snowy winters when in reality they're fairly mild with just occassional cold waves. There's another than includes Virginia but excludes Tennessee. However, I have a hard time believing much of West Virginia to being part of the Sun Belt due to the moderately cold/snowy, often cloudy winters there, and for purposes of this poll, I'm excluding all areas defined by the ARC (though arguably Birmingham is Sun Belt, though that's in a Deep South state). However, most of North Carolina, Tennessee, and the southern half of Virginia have mild winters with snowfall uncommon and are fairly sunny compared to states north of them, and even as far north as Maryland/Delaware/Kentucky outside of the east can sometimes get "non-winters" that have little or no snowfall and grass that never turns a full brown. Also, those states mentioned are growing at/above the national average and That said, outisde of Appalachia, do you believe that the rest of those Upper South states are part of the Sun Belt?
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Old 06-11-2015, 06:55 AM
 
Location: Pittsburgh, PA (Morningside)
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There's no standard definition of the Sun Belt. But often it's used so expansively to include the entire south and west - including the definitively non-sunny Pacific Northwest.

Keep in mind the term Sun Belt was originally developed to describe changes in political demographics in 1970. Essentially that overall, cities in the Northeast And Midwest were stagnant or shrinking, while cities in the South and West continued to grow. I do not think since the 1950s there has been a single state, for example, in the Northeast/Midwest which has gained congressional seats (and thus electoral votes) with the 10 year congressional reapportionment. Relatively sunny climates (or at least, a lack of cold winters) were something which most of the major cities in this region had in common, which is why the term Sun Belt was used. During this time the entire Sun Belt leaned to the right too - California didn't become left wing until the 1990s when there were enough nonwhite voters to cancel out the right-wing lean of white voters in the state outside of the Bay Area.

So yes, overall, I'd argue the entire South is part of the Sun Belt. There are individual cities which have "Rust Belt" characteristics to them - like New Orleans, Birmingham, and Memphis. But then again, there are cities in the Midwest which have Sun Belt characteristics to them, like Indianapolis, Omaha, Kansas City, Columbus, etc.
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Old 06-13-2015, 09:20 AM
 
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Raleigh/Durham is definitely Sun Belt despite being located in the Upper South.
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Old 06-13-2015, 05:51 PM
 
Location: The Pacific Northwest
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I'm not sure. I definitely think Northwest Arkansas is in the Sun Belt and perhaps even Oklahoma City and Tulsa. Less sure about points further east.
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Old 06-13-2015, 07:05 PM
 
Location: OKIE-Ville
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bluefox View Post
I'm not sure. I definitely think Northwest Arkansas is in the Sun Belt and perhaps even Oklahoma City and Tulsa. Less sure about points further east.

Absolutely.
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Old 06-13-2015, 07:36 PM
 
Location: Somewhere below Mason/Dixon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eschaton View Post
There's no standard definition of the Sun Belt. But often it's used so expansively to include the entire south and west - including the definitively non-sunny Pacific Northwest.

Keep in mind the term Sun Belt was originally developed to describe changes in political demographics in 1970. Essentially that overall, cities in the Northeast And Midwest were stagnant or shrinking, while cities in the South and West continued to grow. I do not think since the 1950s there has been a single state, for example, in the Northeast/Midwest which has gained congressional seats (and thus electoral votes) with the 10 year congressional reapportionment. Relatively sunny climates (or at least, a lack of cold winters) were something which most of the major cities in this region had in common, which is why the term Sun Belt was used. During this time the entire Sun Belt leaned to the right too - California didn't become left wing until the 1990s when there were enough nonwhite voters to cancel out the right-wing lean of white voters in the state outside of the Bay Area.

So yes, overall, I'd argue the entire South is part of the Sun Belt. There are individual cities which have "Rust Belt" characteristics to them - like New Orleans, Birmingham, and Memphis. But then again, there are cities in the Midwest which have Sun Belt characteristics to them, like Indianapolis, Omaha, Kansas City, Columbus, etc.

I would agree with this answer. Any state people are moving to in order to get away from cold weather could be called Sun belt. Arizona and North Carolina both qualify, even though they have nothing else in common. Any state south of the Ohio River could be said to be Sun belt.
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Old 06-13-2015, 08:11 PM
 
Location: Washington State desert
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Agreed, this definition has not been defined (so to speak). However, I will offer that many areas that consider themselves in the "sunbelt" actually are quite cloudy. I won't get into naming names, but you know who you are.
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Old 06-13-2015, 08:20 PM
 
Location: The Pacific Northwest
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danielj72 View Post
I would agree with this answer. Any state people are moving to in order to get away from cold weather could be called Sun belt. Arizona and North Carolina both qualify, even though they have nothing else in common. Any state south of the Ohio River could be said to be Sun belt.
What about Missouri? I know the Ohio doesn't go that far west but parts of the state are below that latitude. Places like STL are certainly rust belt and Northern MO definitely has cold winters but there are places in southern MO where people do come from the north seeking milder winters.
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Old 06-13-2015, 10:38 PM
 
Location: Somewhere below Mason/Dixon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bluefox View Post
What about Missouri? I know the Ohio doesn't go that far west but parts of the state are below that latitude. Places like STL are certainly rust belt and Northern MO definitely has cold winters but there are places in southern MO where people do come from the north seeking milder winters.

Just like the endless debates about Missouri being southern vs Midwestern I would say it is kinda sunbelt, just like it is kinda southern.
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Old 06-13-2015, 11:46 PM
 
Location: On the Great South Bay
7,137 posts, read 9,911,493 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Borntoolate85 View Post
I've seen sources referencing the Sun Belt restricting states to the Deep South (along with the Southwest) based on many definitions. However, I've seen some sources expanding the Sun Belt as far north as the traditional northern boundary of the South (Mason-Dixon Line/Ohio River). Looking at one map, I see one that only has Snowbelt vs. Sunbelt that roughly crosses the 36^ 30' parallel, and gives you the perception that states like Virginia and Kentucky have long, cold snowy winters when in reality they're fairly mild with just occassional cold waves. There's another than includes Virginia but excludes Tennessee. However, I have a hard time believing much of West Virginia to being part of the Sun Belt due to the moderately cold/snowy, often cloudy winters there, and for purposes of this poll, I'm excluding all areas defined by the ARC (though arguably Birmingham is Sun Belt, though that's in a Deep South state). However, most of North Carolina, Tennessee, and the southern half of Virginia have mild winters with snowfall uncommon and are fairly sunny compared to states north of them, and even as far north as Maryland/Delaware/Kentucky outside of the east can sometimes get "non-winters" that have little or no snowfall and grass that never turns a full brown. Also, those states mentioned are growing at/above the national average and That said, outisde of Appalachia, do you believe that the rest of those Upper South states are part of the Sun Belt?
I am not sure what other people think but to me the word "Sunbelt" means the Deep South states (including Florida) and the Lower Southwest. In other words, Kentucky, Virginia, West Virginia, Utah and Colorado are NOT Sunbelt IMO.
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