From Which States Are the Most People Threatening to Move to Canada?

Because everything we read on Twitter should be taken seriously, the threat is real. Scores of Americans, frightened at the country’s looming change in leadership, have voiced the same sentiment in 140 characters or fewer. These patriots will pack their basic belongings, cross the border, renounce their American obligations, and replant roots in our neighboring country. No, not Mexico.

"If the presidential election goes the wrong way, I’m moving to Canada,” some of the tweets proclaim. It's not just escaping America that motivates them. As newly minted Canadian residents, they may score universal health care, gun control, polite people and arguably the best maple syrup in the world.

Canada is a country that welcomes immigrants. However, on average, fewer than 9,000 Americans become permanent residents each year. And it seems unlikely that Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will be deploying emergency help to manage the influx of American immigrants.

To learn more about which Americans are vowing to escape the prospect of a catastrophic presidency, the folks at scoured Twitter for posts that mention moving to Canada. Where are the scared masses huddled? It seems that Twitter users in D.C., Nevada, Michigan, Delaware, Ohio and Washington can’t stop talking about moving to Canada.

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The nation's capital, Washington, D.C., had the most tweets about moving to Canada. That was followed by Nevada, where Donald Trump scored a resounding win in the primary caucuses. Clearly, not everyone in the Silver State is a fan, especially in Las Vegas. Scoring third place is the wonderful state of Michigan, where Trump won the GOP primary. Of course, in that case, moving to Canada may not feel like such a stretch as the Great Lakes State has 10 international border crossings into Canada.

In contrast, residents in Wyoming, the most conservative state in the country, have no plans to join the migration, followed by Arkansas, Montana and Idaho, all red states.

Also analyzed was the timing of the tweets.


In the days leading up to Super Tuesday (March 1), moving-to-Canada tweets held fairly steady. One exception was a small spike on February 27, when poll results revealed Trump’s dominance among Massachusetts GOP voters. The day after, at another controversial rally, Trump bemoaned law enforcement’s gentle treatment of a protester.

Trump dominated Super Tuesday, crowned victorious in seven states, and the Canadian heavens opened in the twittersphere. By the evening of March 1, tweets about moving to Canada steadily increased. When they peaked in the ungodly hours of March 2, it clearly showed people were so upset they couldn't sleep. All told, there were nearly 30 times as many tweets about moving to Canada as during the same time 24-hour period the day before. 

Another fun fact? In the Canada tweets, Trump is mentioned 6.4 times more often than Hillary Clinton and almost 23 times more often than Bernie Sanders.

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To these exodus-threatening Americans, Justin Trudeau sounds—and looks—more appealing compared to a hypothetical President Trump. After all, Trump threatened to build a wall between the U.S. and Mexico, has referred to several women as “disgusting,” “unattractive” and a “fat pig”; has insulted Mexicans, African Americans and Muslims; and has said “losers and haters” shouldn't feel "stupid or insecure” because of his high IQ. Let's not forget the violence he's incited and his clear lack of foreign affairs knowledge.

But Canada-bound Americans, here’s the thing—despite the friendly invitation from a small island in Nova Scotia, moving to Canada is not as simple as driving across the border with your suitcase. The process is easier if you have a sponsor in the country or you’re eligible for a work visa, and there are a few factors that could bar you from entry. There’s also an application fee and a waiting period. Don’t forget to pack your toque—the winters up north in Cape Breton can be mighty cold.

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