"To get this broad-based view, we asked SurveyMonkey Audience to ask self-identified Midwesterners which states make the cut."
See, because what you need is data. Because data can be analyzed. And with that data we learn that the heart of the heartland is Illinois. Or is "heartland" a somewhat different place? Maybe another SurveyMonkey for "heartland" and then a Venn diagram showing the overlap.
FiveThirtyEight follows up with "Which States Are in the South?" I have a few questions here. For example: How did only 80-some percent think Mississippi is in The South?
Also, I have an answer about Delaware, where I was born and raised. Apparently somewhere between 10 and 20 percent of those who identify themselves as Southerners see Delaware as part of the south. Living there, I didn't know anyone who had the idea that we were in The South, but as an adult, I have been told repeatedly, often by people who were laughing at me, that's because I'm white. So maybe we need 2 maps of which states are in The South, based on 2 surveys — one from those who identify as southern and black and one from a those who identify as southern and not black.