A couple of points:
1) For this excessive I am looking at who the States went to in the PRESIDENTIAL ELECTIONS.
2) I'm leaving out the other regions because the pattern I wish to demonstrate does not apply. The Mountain States (and Alaska) have ALWAYS been, and REMAIN solidly Republican Territory. (A few have just started to turn, only in the past few cycles.)The Midwest, has generally been a reliable battleground, with a mix of loyalties throughout he region, and the Pacific States WERE solidly Republican until 1992, since which they have become solidly Democratic.
3) I am leaving out the following years, during which one party of the other won in a National Landslide: 1936, 1940, 1944, 1964, 1972, 1984. These years say less about the region and their party loyalty and more about how well (or how poorly) the individual candidates did that year. IOW: That Massachusetts went to Reagan in 1984 or Roosevelt in 1936 says very little about Massachusetts specifically, and far more about Reagan and Roosevelt, since basically the ENTIRE COUNTRY went that way in those years.
4) I am starting with the 1876 elections. This was the first year that the REPUBLICANS faced a unified DEMOCRATIC party. In the elections prior, the Democrats were fractured and ran multiple candidates. And before 1860, there were no Republicans.
5) To keep the number on the same scale, I am counting how often the State went to the DEMOCRAT. And coloring according to that Scale.
Here is the first period:
As you can see, the DEMOCRATS dominated the Deep South. And mind you, this map DOES NOT include the National Democratic Landslides of Franklin Roosevelt!
And now the second period:
WHOA! The damn map done FLIPPED RIGHT OVER! Well... What the hell happened in 1964 that was so...?
"We have lost the South for a generation." President Lyndon Johnson, upon signing the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
OK... So actually the quote itself is mere legend. He never said it. But the sentiment however, if anything, is grossly understated. If he had said it, it would have been amazingly prescient. And given that this is basically the largest, if not the only, such change in electoral college trends - as the Mountain states were already Red and stayed Red, the Midwest stayed mostly purple, and the Pacific Coast (3 states) changing much later - don't tell me that this isn't about race. And don't believe ANYONE when the say that the DEMOCRATS are the party of the KKK. Oh, sure, they were. No doubt about it: LOOK AT THE TOP MAP!
But when they STOPPED being that?
They lost the South for GENERATIONS, and have still failed to win the bulk of it back.