The data shows that the United States has a national problem with severe regional crises. As of Monday, the country had about 579,000 recorded cases of covid-19. Data from the New York Times shows that nearly half —almost 256,000 cases — were from the New York metropolitan area. Broaden that out to other counties in the New York area, and you add 19,000 more cases. An area that contains less than 7 percent of the national population had nearly 50 percent of the nation’s cases.
A mere four other regions of the country combined for roughly 68,000 more cases. The Boston and Detroit combined statistical areas had almost 47,000 cases between them, while the regions in eastern and southern Louisiana, including the New Orleans and Baton Rouge metro areas, had 17,000. Add the Hartford, Conn., metro area and the western part of Massachusetts to these areas and New York, and you’ve accounted for 60 percent of the nation’s cases.
Henry Olsen is a senior fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center.