When it comes to the economic climate of a particular state or the country as a whole, does political party affiliation matter?

A common complaint is that there is no real difference between the Republicans and the Democrats. Of course, this complaint is not one that you'll hear from the leadership of either party. They're quick to malign their opposition and defend their own policies and ideas.

Take a look at the following graph (via Business Insider from earlier this month) and let's see if any conclusions can be drawn:

screen shot 2014-07-19 at 6.27.34 am


A quick look at the 5 states on either side of the graph and a brief analysis of their statewide party support is revealing.

High Unemployment states:

  • Mississippi: Strongly Republican - Republican governor and Senators, 75% of their Congressmen are Republican and their state legislature is 55% Republican.
  • Rhode Island: Strongly not Republican - Independent governor, 100% Democratic Senators and Congressmen, and Republicans are only 10% of the state legislature.
  • Nevada: Mixed - Republican governor, Senators and Congressional representation is split down the middle, and the state legislature is 63% Democrat.
  • Michigan: Mixed - Republican governor, Democratic Senators, mixed in the House, and 58% Republican in the legislature.
  • California: Republicans need not apply - Democrat governor and Senators, 75% of those in Congress are Democrats, and Republicans are just under 30% of the state legislature.

Result: Only one “Strongly Republican” state is in the bottom five.

Low Unemployment states:

  • North Dakota: Strongly Republican - Republican governor, Sentators are split, Republican House member, and the state legislature is 75% Republican.
  • Utah: Even stronger Republican presence - Everything is Republican except one House member and 18% of the state legislature.
  • Vermont: Republicans need not apply - only 32% of the state body is Republican and that's it.
  • Nebraska: Most Republican of all - 39% of the state legislature is Democrat and everything else is Republican.
  • South Dakota: Stongly Republican - one Democratic Senator and only 24% Democratic representation in the state legislature.

Result: Only one Democratic state in the top five.

From this basic analysis, the results seem fairly clear. What do you think?

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