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    Two Visions of America by Don Jans

    “An Absolute Mad Rush”: Californians Confess Why They’re Fleeing The State

    By Jamie Joseph

    When former Bay Area resident Terry Gilliam, 62, started the Facebook group “Leaving California” in 2018, the group attracted 200 members within six months. Four years later, the group has over 50,000 members, and the number continues to climb every week.

    “In the last 30 days, we’ve added 11,000 members, which is darn close to a record,” Gilliam told The Epoch Times.

    “And it all started on January 1st … I think there is an absolute mad rush of people who are going to get out of California this year.”

    Although he formed the group a few years ago, Gilliam didn’t take the plunge and move out of state to Florida until last year. Issues like homelessness, crime, politics, cost of housing, traffic, and exorbitant taxes pushed Gilliam away—and he’s not the only one.

    When the group first began, Gilliam said Idaho and Texas were the most popular destinations for California residents. Now, he’s seeing more people moving to Tennessee and Florida as well.

    Earlier this month, U-Haul reported that the top states for people moving within the United States in 2021 were Texas, Florida, Tennessee, South Carolina, and Arizona, while California was at the very bottom of the list.

    leftugees leaving california migration blue red state
    <span style=font family helvetica arial sans serif font size 12pt>A u Haul truck on its way out of somewhere perhaps California<span>

    Matt Merrill, U-Haul area district vice president of the Dallas Fort-Worth Metroplex and West Texas, said in a statement that many people are moving to Texas from California, New York, and other states “due to the job growth—a lot of opportunity here. The cost of living here is much lower than those areas. Texas is open for business.”

    Demand was so high, U-Haul even ran out of trucks leaving California last year, according to the company.

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