25 Most Liberal Cities in the U.S. (2024)

In this article, we are going to discuss the 25 most liberal cities in the U.S. You can skip our detailed analysis of the history of liberalism, the polarization between liberal and conservative communities, the most liberal state in America, the most liberal city in the world, the most progressive American companies and the global D&I market, and go directly to 5 Most Liberal Cities in the U.S.

In today’s America, some are proud to call themselves liberal, while others attach negative connotations to the word. Supporters of modern liberalism believe it represents the desire for the government to assist in social and political change, but critics of liberalism often feel that it is a threat to their own way of life.

According to a publication by the University of Richmond, the term ‘liberalism’ wasn’t used in a political context until the early 19th century, when ‘liberal’ became a label applied to those who sought a more tolerant and open society – a society whose members would be free to pursue their own ideas and interests with as little interference as possible. This first happened when a faction of the Spanish Cortes of 1810-1811 adopted the name ‘Liberales’. From there, the term spread quickly to France and Great Britain, where the party known as the Whigs evolved, by the 1840’s, into the Liberal Party.

Polarization Between Liberal and Conservative Communities:

A study at the Pew Research Center has revealed that conservatives would rather live in large houses in small towns and rural areas, ideally among people who share their religious faith. Liberals, on the other hand, prefer a vibrant city setting, with smaller homes, walkable streets, and a diversity of races and ethnicities.

According to the report, 41% of the people with consistently conservative views say they would live in a rural area if they could live anywhere in the U.S., while 35% picked a small town. Conversely, 46% of the people with consistently liberal views prefer to live in cities. About 20% of the people from both categories also stated that they’d prefer to live in a suburb.

The Most Liberal State in America:

The most liberal state in America is Massachusetts and more liberals live in the Old Bay State than anywhere else in the U.S. About 35% of the state’s residents consider themselves liberal and the state has voted Democratic 13 out of 15 times in a presidential election since 1964.

According to a report by the Center for Legislative Accountability, Massachusetts lawmakers are the most liberal in the nation. Only 16% of the votes cast by Massachusetts state legislators in 2020 aligned with conservative positions on issues like corporate tax hikes and abortion access etc.

The city of Boston is among the most liberal in the country, as you will read below in our list of 25 Most Liberal Cities in America.

Most Liberal City in the World:

Amsterdam, with its bustling coffee shops and red-light districts, is the most liberal city in the world. The Dutch capital was not only among the first cities in Europe to develop the cultural and political foundations of liberalism, but also acted as an exporter of those beliefs to the rest of Europe and even the new world.

Its extensive tolerance and principles of ‘education over prohibition’, make Amsterdam one of the most progressive cities in Europe. The Netherlands was one of the first nations to legalize same-sex marriage and is among the Most LGBTQ Friendly Countries in the World.

Most Progressive Companies:

A progressive workplace encourages inclusion and diversity, has policies in place that are employee-friendly, focuses on sustainable practices, and provides allowances and incentives that allow its employees to reach their full potential. Companies with an increased level of gender diversity have a significantly higher possibility of outperforming their less diverse counterparts.

PayPal Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:PYPL) is a financial technology corporation operating a payment gateway system that supports money transfers worldwide. According to GlobalData, PayPal Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:PYPL) has a 43.7% female representation in its workforce and 55% of the workforce comprises Asians, Hispanics/Latinos, and African Americans. In June 2020, PayPal Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:PYPL) also announced a $530 million commitment to support Black businesses, strengthen minority communities, and fight economic inequality.

American Express Company (NYSE:AXP) also announced in 2020 to spend $1 billion in its diversity, equality and inclusion (DE&I) initiatives. As of March 2022, American Express Company (NYSE:AXP) has exceeded its commitment and now plans to spend an additional $3 billion towards DE&I initiatives until the end of 2025. Furthermore, American Express Company (NYSE:AXP) claims to have maintained 100% pay equity across ethnicities and races in the U.S. for the last two consecutive years.

If you wish to read about more progressive American companies, please refer to our article 15 Most Progressive Companies in America.

The Global D&I Market:

According to Global Industry Analysts, the global market for Diversity & Inclusion (D&I) was estimated at $9.4 billion in 2022, and is projected to reach $24.3 billion by 2030, growing at a CAGR of 12.6% in the forecast period.

Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) is the largest segment in this global market and is projected to reach $7 billion by 2030, with a CAGR of 12.1% in the analysis period. Typical ERGs include networks for women, people of color, LGBTQ, veterans, the differently-abled, and young professionals. ERGs provide a number of benefits, including raising cultural awareness among staff, increasing employee satisfaction and retention rates, cultivating an environment of mentorship, and many others.

With that said, here is our list of the Most Liberal U.S. Cities.

25 Most Liberal Cities in the U.S. (1)

Pixabay/ Public Domain


To make our list of 25 Most Liberal Cities in the U.S., we have relied on four metrics to determine the meaning of a liberal city. The most liberal cities tend to have substantially higher general expenditures per capita, so we selected the cities with the highest general spending from the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy. Then we selected cities with the most ethnic diversity and the best cities for young professionals (since young professionals tend to be more liberal), from Niche. In the end, we also selected cities most inclined towards liberal politics from ‘Representation in Municipal Government’ by Chris Tausanovitch and Christopher Warshaw.

Then, similar to the methodology we used for our article 15 Best Cities to Live in Europewe picked the cities that appeared in at least three of the aforementioned indexes and assigned a score to these cities based on their rankings in each index. For instance, if we picked the top 40 cities with the highest general spending, the #1 city will get a score of 40/40 = 1 and the #2 city will get a score of 39/40 = 0.975 and so on. The same process was repeated for all the indexes and thus we determined an average score for each city and ranked it accordingly.

To keep our list more relevant, we have only mentioned cities with populations of 200,000 and above.

25. New Orleans, Louisiana

Insider Monkey Score: 1.39

New Orleans is a predominantly liberal city with a heavy democratic influence. With the distinctive social culture, population demographics, voting habits and history of the city, New Orleans is forged into one the most liberal cities in the south, though it is in the relatively conservative state of Louisiana.

24. San Diego, California

Insider Monkey Score: 1.48

San Diego saw a shift in voter registration data between 2004 and 2020. The shift, which started slow and picked up steam in recent election cycles, has transformed San Diego from a reliably red city to the light blue city we see today. Living in San Diego offers residents an urban suburban mix feel, with lots of restaurants, parks, bars and a vibrant craft beer scene.

23. Long Beach, California

Insider Monkey Score: 1.49

Though Long Beach leaned red in last year’s midterm balloting, it has been a Democratic stronghold for decades. Long Beach had a per capita general expenditure of $3,557 in 2020, the 24th highest for a city in America. The city is also one of the most diverse in the country, with a high percentage of foreign born population.

22. Irvine, California

Insider Monkey Score: 1.51

Ranked the 22nd best city for young professionals in America by Niche, the Orange County city also boasts a high foreign-born population of 39.4%, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

The Irvine city council also voted unanimously in 2020, to repeal a city initiative that denied the LGBTQ community anti-discrimination protection based on their sexual orientation.

21. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Insider Monkey Score: 1.53

Pittsburgh is a vibrant city with a high foreign-born and racially diverse population, and the Steel City was also ranked the 10th best city for young professionals in America. After the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade last year, the Pittsburgh city council passed bills affirming abortion rights in city limits.

20. Kansas City, Missouri

Insider Monkey Score: 1.54

Although it is situated in the more conservative state of Missouri, Kansas City is surprisingly a liberal city. Nicknamed ‘The Heart of America’, the city had a per capita general expenditure of 3,987 dollars in 2020. Officials in Kansas City also approved a resolution in May, declaring the city a sanctuary for people seeking or providing gender-affirming care, defying state lawmakers who voted a day earlier to ban such care for minors and restrict it for some adults.

19. St. Paul, Minnesota

Insider Monkey Score: 1.72

The state capital of Minnesota, with its rich diversity, a vibrant LGBTQ community and a foreign-born population of 19.1%, is among the most liberal cities in the U.S. The GLBT Host Home Program is a program run by the St. Paul-based organization Avenues for Homeless Youth that provides temporary housing and support to LGBTQ+ youth who are experiencing homelessness.

In the 2020 U.S. elections, the largest companies in Minnesota donated millions to political campaigns. UnitedHealth Group Incorporated (NYSE:UNH), the biggest company in the state, reportedly donated over $4.4 million in the election campaign.

18. Buffalo, New York

Insider Monkey Score: 1.75

One of the most liberal small cities in the U.S., Buffalo is also very much a trailblazer of the early gay rights movement in America, when a community of activists resisted against police brutality in the 70’s and forged their own path in the fight for LGBTQ equality. The City of Light also boasts a high per capita expenditure of $5,618.

17. Atlanta, Georgia

Insider Monkey Score: 1.77

The capital of Georgia is one of the most racially diverse cities in the country, with 48.2% people identifying themselves as black or African American. The city also had a per capita general expenditure of $3,373 in 2020.

16. Los Angeles, California

Insider Monkey Score: 1.79

It comes as no surprise that the City of Angels, with its rich and vibrant diversity, is one the most liberal cities in the country. Los Angeles is also home to several companies that are taking steps to become more progressive and ‘woke’, and one of those is The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS). Numerous steps towards becoming more inclusive have been taken by The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS) recently, including a kiss between two female characters in the movie Lightyear, and casting the African American actress Halle Bailey as Ariel in The Little Mermaid. Back in January 2022, The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS) also debuted a new look for Minnie Mouse, which saw the beloved character abandoning her red polka-dot dress in favor of a ‘progressive’ blue pantsuit designed by Stella McCartney.

15. Baltimore, Maryland

Insider Monkey Score: 1.81

The Baltimore metro area is among those with the highest concentration of gay and lesbian coupled households in the U.S. According to a report by the U.S. Census Bureau, around 2% of coupled households in the Baltimore area are either same-sex married couple or same-sex unmarried partner households, about 1.3 times the national average.Baltimore was also the city with the 6th highest per capita general expenditure in 2020, with $6,8999.

14. Miami, Florida

Insider Monkey Score: 1.84

Miami is the American city with the second-highest percentage of foreign-born population, with 58.1%. Miami is also one of the few places where the LGBTQ community even has its own chamber of commerce, the Miami-Dade Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce.

13. Arlington, Texas

Insider Monkey Score: 1.9

The Texas city of Arlington is next on our list of the most liberal cities in America. Known for its cotton ginning and agricultural products, Arlington is also the 5th best city in America for young professionals. With a foreign-born population of 20.9%, Arlington is, in fact, also one of the Most Diverse Cities in the U.S. to Retire In.

12. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Insider Monkey Score: 1.92

Philadelphia is one of the most diverse cities in the U.S., with an almost equal number of black and white residents, and also a sizable Asian and Hispanic communities. Philadelphia also boasted a per capita general expenditure of $4,682 in 2020.

11. Austin, Texas

Insider Monkey Score: 1.96

With its motto ‘Keep Austin Weird’, the Texas city is also one of the Best Cities for Young People in the world. Austin is also home to Dell Technologies Inc. (NYSE:DELL), which is taking several steps to cultivate inclusion, including its goal to have 25% U.S. workforce and 15% U.S. people leaders who identify as African American or Hispanic, by 2030.

10. Chicago, Illinois

Insider Monkey Score: 2.31

Politics in Chicago, through most of the 20th century, was dominated by the Democratic Party and the Windy City was the political base for Barack Obama, who was elected as president in 2008. Chicago also has an extensive LGBTQ history and was the birthplace of the first gay rights organization in America – The Society for Human Rights – established and recognized in 1924.

9. Minneapolis, Minnesota

Insider Monkey Score: 2.34

Minneapolis is among the top 10 most liberal cities in the U.S. in our list and offers its residents a bustling downtown area and serene lakes and parks, with an exceptional live music culture famous for its rich diversity. Governor Tim Waltz signed an executive order in March, protecting the rights of LGBTQ people from Minnesota and other states to receive gender affirming health care.

8. Portland, Oregon

Insider Monkey Score: 2.59

Portland is not only one of the most liberal college towns in the U.S. but also one of the most affordable liberal cities in America. The costs for food, healthcare, utilities etc. all average below or on par with the national average in the City of Roses. The city also had a per capita general expenditure of $2,697 in 2020.

7. Denver, Colorado

Insider Monkey Score: 2.66

The capital of Colorado is the 7th most liberal city in the U.S. and sustains a rich cultural diversity with a foreign-born population of 14.2% and a Hispanic/Latino population of 29.4%. Denver also has an extensive LGBTQ rights history and held its first official Pride parade in 1975.

6. Oakland, California

Insider Monkey Score: 2.77

Oakland declared itself a ‘Pro Choice Sanctuary City’ in May last year. The city council passed a unanimous resolution reaffirming its support for Congresswoman Barbara Lee’s Women Healthcare Protection Act, and advocating for more state and county funding to be provided to reproductive care providers in anticipation of an influx of out-of-state patients.

Click to continue reading and see the 5Most Liberal Cities in the U.S.

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Disclaimer: None.25 Most Liberal Cities in the U.S.is originally published on Insider Monkey.

25 Most Liberal Cities in the U.S. (2024)


What is the most liberal city in the USA? ›

San Francisco is widely recognized as one of the most liberal cities in the United States. The city's progressive reputation can be attributed to several factors that have shaped its identity over time. Firstly, San Francisco has a rich historical legacy rooted in progressive movements.

What is the most liberal state in the United States? ›

Massachusetts tops the list for being the most liberal state in the US. 35% of the state's population identifies as liberals which is the highest in the country. In contrast, only 21% identify as conservative. The state has liberal policies on abortion rights, with the procedure legal up to 24 weeks of pregnancy.

What state is the most conservative? ›

15 Most Conservative States in the US
  • Kansas. PVI Score (2022): R+10. ...
  • Indiana. PVI Score (2022): R+11. ...
  • Mississippi. PVI Score (2022): R+11. ...
  • Louisiana. PVI Score (2022): R+12. ...
  • Nebraska. PVI Score (2022): R+13. ...
  • Tennessee. PVI Score (2022): R+14. ...
  • South Dakota. PVI Score (2022): R+16. ...
  • Alabama. PVI Score (2022): R+15.
Apr 28, 2024

Is Florida a liberal state? ›

The state is dominated by Republicans on the state level, as Democrats have not held the governorship or either house of the legislature since 1999. Republicans currently have veto-proof majorities in both houses of the Florida legislature.

What is voted the best city in America? ›

The numbers are in: New data reveals how U.S. cities stack up in Resonance's annual list of the best in the country. New York City took first place again in 2024.

What is the most Democrat state? ›

  1. Vermont. Vermont is the most Democratic state in the U.S. with a PVI of D+16. ...
  2. Massachusetts. Massachusetts is the second-most Democratic state with a PVI of D+15. ...
  3. Hawaii. With a PVI of D+14, Hawaii is the third-most democratic state in the United States. ...
  4. Maryland. ...
  5. 5. California. ...
  6. New York. ...
  7. Washington. ...
  8. Rhode Island.

What is the best liberal state to retire in? ›

This includes Florida, California, and Hawaii, making it the perfect destination for US citizens who want to move for retirement without crossing international borders. As one of the most liberal cities in the US, Berkeley in California is a particularly good choice for the best warm liberal places to retire in USA.

What state is mostly Republican? ›

Wyoming is the most Republican state in the U.S. Wyoming has a Cook Partisan Voting Index of +25. Wyoming's strong Conservative lean is attributed to its large rural, white, and Evangelical populations. Wyoming has voted Republican in every Presidential election since 1952, except for the 1964 election.

Who is the most liberal Republican? ›

The New York Times arranged Republican Senators in 2017 based on ideology and ranked Senator Collins as the most liberal Republican. According to GovTrack, Senator Collins is the most moderate Republican in the Senate; GovTrack's analysis places her to the left of every Republican and four Democrats in 2017.

What is the best state to live in? ›

According to the survey, health care and education were ranked highest, and had the most weight in determining the best states to live. Utah once again topped the list, followed by New Hampshire, Nebraska, Minnesota and Idaho rounding out the top five.

Is Florida a Republican state? ›

The Republican Party has rapidly gained ground in recent decades. It is currently the state's dominant party, controlling 20 out of 28 of Florida's U.S. House seats, both U.S. Senate seats, the governorship and all other statewide offices, and has supermajorities in both houses of the state legislature.

Is Oregon a blue or red state? ›

Oregon leans Democratic as a state, with both U.S. senators from the Democratic party, as well as four out of Oregon's six U.S. Representatives. The Democratic candidate for president has won in Oregon in every election since 1988.

Are people moving to Florida Democrats or Republicans? ›

Republicans' voter registration advantage over Democrats in Florida has grown to nearly 700,000 this year. There were more registered Democrats than Republicans in Florida as recently as 2021. Republicans moving to Florida, Smith said, “has been a trend for at least 60 years. …

What is the most progressive state? ›

Massachusetts is the most liberal state in the U.S., with 35% of voters identifying as liberal. With 21% of voters identifying as conservative, Massachusetts has a liberal advantage of 14 points. Moderates are the largest group in Massachusetts, with 38% of the voting population identifying as moderate.

Is Colorado Democratic or Republican? ›

Colorado gained statehood in August 1876. After voting primarily Republican from 1920-2004, the state has voted with the Democrats in the last four presidential elections, including Joe Biden's 13.5% margin in 2020.

Which group tends to be the most liberal in the United States? ›

The Democratic Party represents liberals in the United States, with 50% of Democrats identifying as liberal, compared to only 4% of Republicans.

What is the most Republican state in America? ›

Wyoming is the most Republican state in the U.S. Wyoming has a Cook Partisan Voting Index of +25. Wyoming's strong Conservative lean is attributed to its large rural, white, and Evangelical populations. Wyoming has voted Republican in every Presidential election since 1952, except for the 1964 election.

What is the most liberal government? ›

The Most Liberal Countries to Move to:
  • Norway.
  • Sweden.
  • Denmark.
  • Finland.
  • Iceland.
  • New Zealand.
  • Switzerland.
  • Canada.
Jan 18, 2023

Is most of California liberal? ›

As most of the population is in Southern California and the San Francisco Bay Area, California as a whole tends to be liberal.

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