From the Upshot in the New York Times:

As American as Apple Pie? The Rural Vote’s Disproportionate Slice of Power

Rural America, even as it laments its economic weakness, retains vastly disproportionate electoral strength. Rural voters were able to nudge Donald J. Trump to power despite Hillary Clinton’s large margins in cities like New York.

In a House of Representatives that structurally disadvantages Democrats because of their tight urban clustering, rural voters helped Republicans hold their cushion. In the Senate, the least populous states are now more overrepresented than ever before. And the growing unity of rural Americans as a voting bloc has converted the rural bias in national politics into a potent Republican advantage. …

The Electoral College is just one example of how an increasingly urban country has inherited the political structures of a rural past. Today, states containing just 17 percent of the American population, a historic low, can theoretically elect a Senate majority … The bias also shapes the House of Representatives.

Today, the influence of rural voters also evokes deeply rooted ideals about who should have power in America. Jefferson and James Madison argued that the strength of the nation would always derive from its agrarian soil. …

Today, equal state representation in the Senate is the only provision in the Constitution that cannot be amended. But even as a deliberately undemocratic body, the Senate has slipped further out of alignment with the American population over time.  The Senate hasn’t simply favored sparsely populated states; politicians in Washington created sparsely populated states to leverage the Senate’s skewed power. …

“They justified it because that was a cultural norm; it was just the way things were,” said Stephen Ansolabehere, a Harvard professor of government. Rural legislators had no incentive to change a system that favored them. “They just let it keep getting worse. You’re in power. Why change?” …

These calculations also mean that populous states subsidize less populous ones, which receive more resources than the tax dollars they send to Washington.

The challenge for rural voters now is that their electoral strength, and even these funding formulas, have not translated into policies that have fixed the deep economic problems they face, from high unemployment to declining wages. And it’s unclear how Mr. Trump will do that for them, either — even if his major infrastructure proposal comes to pass and helps rebuild their roads.

Also this:

The Election Highlighted a Growing Rural-Urban Split

… the widening political divergence between cities and small-town America also reflects a growing alienation between the two groups, and a sense — perhaps accurate — that their fates are not connected. …

As the relationship between density and partisanship has grown stronger over the last half-century, the structure of the economy has also changed in ways that reinforce the divide.

“In a sense, the high-end economy in these urban areas is disconnected from the success from the rest of the country,” Aaron Renn, a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute, said. And the very things that drive success in Silicon Valley’s tech industry, or New York City’s financial sector, are what worries rural America: globalization, foreign trade, immigration. “Goldman Sachs and Google do not really need America to be a broad-based middle-class success in order for them to be personally successful.”

Those economic forces will probably grow only stronger, even as the effects of an election that pushed urban and rural America further apart recede.

Full article here.