Minnesota grows a bit older, less white, more metropolitan

Published 4:13 pm Thursday, August 12, 2021

MINNEAPOLIS — Minnesota has grown a bit older, a bit less white and a bit more metropolitan, according to census data released Thursday.

The data release from the U.S. Census Bureau provided the first detailed look from the 2020 at population and demographic shifts within each state. Figures released earlier this year showed that Minnesota’s population grew to 5.7 million in 2020, an increase of 7.6%, which was just barely enough to let the state keep its eight congressional districts.

Minnesota remains overwhelmingly white, though not by as much. The population identifying as white dipped from 83.1% in 2010 to 76.3% in 2020. But the population identifying as Black rose from 5.1% to 6.9%. Whites remain the largest racial group in every Minnesota county. The state’s most diverse county is Mahnomen, where Native Americans make up 41.7% of the population.

Minnesotans age 18 and older make up 76.9% of the population. The 18-plus population rose 9.2% from 2010 to 2020 while the growth in the under-18 population lagged at 2.6%.

One of the biggest things at stake in the new census numbers is the state’s political map, which must be redrawn to reflect population shifts. The data show a shift away from greater Minnesota toward the Twin Cities area, particularly the suburbs. Redistricting usually ends up in the courts.