data map ePodunk study identifies the most liberal communities in the U.S.

For all those frustrated Democrats who are considering a move to Canada, we offer a few closer alternatives.

Our list of "Most Liberal Places in America" is based not on opinion polls, which have come under fire in recent elections, but on votes, political contributions and demographics. The rankings, at right, show nationwide picks by the size of the community and statewide rankings for 29 states.

We considered the following data in making our selections:

  • Individual contributions to PACs
    We analyzed 1.8 million contributions to 2,300 political action committees that could be identified as Democratic/Liberal or Republican/Conservative. This data, for the 2003-2004 election cycle, was downloaded from the Federal Election Commission on Nov. 9.

  • Election returns
    Unofficial election results in the 2004 presidential race were reported at the county level for every county in the U.S., and at the local level for many New England communities.

  • Gay households
    This index was compiled from the U.S. Census by Gary Gates, a demographer at the Urban Institute and co-author of The Gay and Lesbian Atlas. Figures were included for the 1,360 U.S. communities in which 50 or more couples reported living in such relationships.

  • Local government resolutions opposing combat in Iraq

  • Local officials performing gay marriages

  • Congressional District voting history
    (Note: Because this factor was part of the screen for rankings, Washington, D.C., which does not have congressional representation, was excluded from our study. Washington residents who do not live in the White House showed strong liberal leanings in their votes for president and political contributions. The city also has a large number of gay households.)

  • Population
    Community population, as reported in the 2000 census.
For more information, send us an email at, or call us, at 607-387-4181.

Released November, 2004

Other rankings

(100,000 or more)
   Boston, MA
   Cambridge, MA
   Berkeley, CA
   Oakland, CA
   San Francisco, CA
   New Haven, CT
   Providence, RI
   New York, NY
   Baltimore, MD
   Seattle, WA
   Northampton, MA
   Somerville, MA
   Arlington, MA
   Watertown, MA
   Santa Cruz, CA
   Alameda, CA
   Ithaca, NY
   Portland, ME
   East Palo Alto, CA
   Chelsea, MA
(Under 25,000)
   Provincetown, MA
   Mount Rainier, MD
   Albany, CA
   Fairfax, CA
   Garrett Park, MD
   Orono, ME
   Takoma Park, MD
   Guerneville, CA
   Bar Harbor, ME
   Johnson, VT
(For selected states)
   AZ - Flagstaff
   CA - Berkeley
   CO - Telluride
   CT - Salisbury
   FL - Wilton Manors
   GA - Decatur
   IA - Iowa City
   IL - Oak Park
   KS - Lawrence
   MA - Boston
   MD - Mount Rainier
   ME - Orono
   MI - Ferndale
   MN - Golden Valley
   MO - Kansas City
   NC - Carrboro
   NH - Hanover
   NJ - Montclair
   NM - Santa Fe
   NY - Ithaca
   OH - Oberlin
   OR - Lincoln City
   PA - Philadelphia
   RI - Providence
   TX - Bellaire
   VA - Baileys Crossroads
   VT - Johnson
   WA - Vashon
   WI - Madison