How Solid was the South for Democrats?

I was browsing the 1982 Almanac of American Politics and came across a fascinating chart detailing the control of state legislatures.  We all know that the South used to be solidly Democratic for generations post-Appomattox, but did you have any idea it was this solid?

State Legislature Split in 1982, measured D-R

State Upper Lower Gov.

Alabama       35-0       105-4        D

Arkansas      34-1        93-7          D

Florida          27-13     81-39        D

Georgia         51-5       157-23       D

Louisiana     39-0       91-10         D

Mississippi   43-4       116-4         D

N. Carolina   40-10     96-24       D

Oklahoma     37-11       73-28       D

S. Carolina    41-5        107-17       D

Texas              24-7       58-39        D

Virginia          31-9       74-25        D

4 Responses to “How Solid was the South for Democrats?”

  1. D T Nelson

    15 January 2011 at 11:41 PM

    Hey, what about Tennessee?

  2. Patrick Ottenhoff

    16 January 2011 at 1:31 PM

    TN is an interesting case. Southern states that have fewer blacks than their Confederate brethren (Virginia, Tennessee, Arkansas) always had a more robust two-party system. The mountain communities in Virginia and Tennessee especially were always more sympathetic to Lincoln’s Republicans — West Virginia was the extension of that sentiment. In fact, I’m not sure that the eastern division of Tennessee has ever once elected a Democrat to Congress, ever.

  3. Alan

    21 January 2011 at 3:46 AM

    You might want to check on the figure for Texas’s lower house; those numbers add up to 97 and the Texas House has 150 members. Wikipedia says the composition in 1982 was 113 Democrats and 37 Republicans. And today, it’s a near-reversal, with 101 Republicans and 49 Democrats.

    Also according to Wikipedia, Arkansas is the only state where Democrats currently have majorities in both chambers of their state legislature. In Louisiana and Mississippi, they control one chamber.


  1. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by chris faulkner, Ross P. Ross P said: RT @johnnyA99 RT @theelectoralmap How Solid *was* the South for Democrats? http://bit.ly/hdcokn [...]