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Auchter's Art: Stagnation population

A recent article by Bridge Michigan brings up an often cited but long unresolved issue — the ongoing stagnation of Michigan's population. Michigan ranks 49th among states in population growth since 1990, ahead of only West Virginia.

If you've lived here for awhile, you are sure to be aware of the reasons and circumstances for this. Notice I didn't write "excuses" because that would imply that nothing has been done or can be done to fix this. I think our state has plenty going for it and the capability to retain and attract people. A good plan and a consistent governance would help. But I think we'll get there.

Still, I have to admit to being a bit defensive about this. On the macro level, it's difficult to see growth-leading states add populations both to places without enough water and places with too much water. Sure, Michigan has an occasional dry spell or summer home slide into a Great Lake, but on the whole it's an incredibly safe and sustainable place to live. You'd think that would be enough to move us up a few places on the growth list!

John Auchter is a freelance political cartoonist. His views are his own and do not necessarily reflect those of Michigan Radio, its management, or its license holder, the University of Michigan.

Since 1995 John has created Michigan-based editorial cartoons for the Grand Rapids Business Journal, the Grand Rapids Press, and MLive Newspapers. His cartoons are currently featured at MichiganPublic.org and are syndicated to newspapers through the Michigan Press Association. John is an active member of the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists. You can view an archive of his editorial work and other cartoons at Auchtoon.com.
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