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Florida Passes NY as 3rd Most Populous State

12-23-14FloridaPopulation.jpg
U.S. Census Bureau

Earlier this year, PolitiFact Florida gave a "mostly false" grade to Senator Bill Nelson's claim that Florida had passed New York to become the nation's third most populous state.

It turns out Sen. Nelson was right - he was just a few months off.

According to U.S. Census Bureau figures released Tuesday, Florida added an average of just over 800 new residents daily between July 1, 2013 and July 1, 2014. Such growth helped the Sunshine State finally move past New York in the latest state population estimates.

Florida's population grew by 293,000 people over that time to 19.9 million, while New York added 51,000 people to 19.7 million.

California and Texas remain at the top of the list at 38.8 million and 27 million residents, respectively. North Dakota was the nation's fastest-growing state (2.2%) followed by Nevada and Texas (1.7%). Nine of the ten fastest-growing states were in the South or West.

Six states lost population, led by Illinois (down almost 10,000 residents or .08%) and West Virginia (down more than 3,200 residents or .18%).

The Census Bureau showed the U.S. saw its population grow by 2.4 million people to 318.9 million, a .75% increase.