Resize and relocate Alaska and Hawaii on US county map with R

How can I resize, relocate and frame Alaska and Hawaii on a US county map, to look more like a traditional map of the fifty states (and DC)?

I've loaded Esri's US county shapefile into R:

``````library(rgeos)
library(maptools)
# Download from www.baruch.cuny.edu/confluence/display/geoportal/ESRI+USA+Data and unzip
counties.shp <- readShapeSpatial("counties.shp")
``````

I've processed and merged the shapes and data:

``````library(ggplot2)
counties.shp.f <- fortify(counties.shp, region = "FIPS")
cty_map <- merge(counties.shp.f, cty_pop_msa[,c(2:3,5:6)], by.x="id", by.y="cty_geoid", all.x=TRUE)
cty_map <- cty_map[order(cty_map\$order),]
``````

I've plotted a choropleth map of MSA counties:

``````library(ggmap)
ggplot() +
geom_polygon(data = cty_map,
aes(x = long, y = lat, group = group, fill = metro),
color = "black", size = 0.25) +
coord_map(xlim=c(-200,-50), ylim=c(25,70)) + theme_nothing(legend = TRUE)
``````

However, Alaska and Hawaii are represented to scale and in their proper locations (I guess), which makes the contiguous US barely legible in A4 format, Hawai invisible, and Alaska too emphasized :

What I need is something more like this, in terms of Alaska's and Hawaii's relative sizes and positions, e.g. sized to fit south-west of Texas and framed:

• I've seen this solution but am hard put to transpose it to my own data.
– syre
Commented Aug 11, 2017 at 6:16
• Commented Aug 11, 2017 at 9:38
• @hrbrmstr Fantastic. Are there easy ways to frame Alaska and Hawaii and/or display an indication of scale for each of the three blocks?
– syre
Commented Aug 11, 2017 at 11:11
• Now, that is a gd question. There's another approach: r-nold.blogspot.com/2014/06/… (it might need tweaking with newer ggplot2 changes) would be an easier way to go IMO. Commented Aug 11, 2017 at 14:23