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ALEC on One America News: Bad Governors Double Down on Growing Government

The nation's worst governors all have one thing in common, they are doubling down on growing the size of government.

American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) Chief Economist and Executive Vice President of Policy joined One America News Network this week to share insights from the 2021 Laffer-ALEC Governors Scorecard ranking the nation’s best and worst governors.

OANN Host: Before we get to the data, tell us what the governor’s scorecard is.

ALEC Chief Economist Jonathan Williams:
It’s really a report to help Americans and people across the country way to measure their governor versus the other 49. There’s so many groups out there that rightly look at Members of Congress for instance, and look at their voting record.  But there’s very few that tcompile an apples-to-apples comparison of how 50 men and women govern their states along with their state legislators. We rank them in the context of  free market, limited government values.

OANN Host:  And interestingly enough, the February unemployment data from the Labor Department revealed Republican-led states outperformed Democrat-led ones with job recovery and unemployment rates. How much did this have an impact on your report?

ALEC Chief Economist Jonathan Williams:
We absolutely look at things like where people are moving. What’s the unemployment rate? What are the job growth numbers by state? Those are some of the key factors in addition to tax rates, and school choice ideas. It’s really hard to ignore states like South Dakota, number one with Gov. Kristi Noem and Utah at number two in this report and Florida at number three. Those states have some of the lowest unemployment rates in the country compared to New Mexico, under Michelle Lujan Grisham, who ranked dead last at 50th place. New Mexico has an unemployment rate nearly three times the rate of the states at the top of the list. So policies matter. Free markets matter.

OANN Host:
I want to get to now the five governors on the bottom of the state governors list.  All are Democrats. Aside from their political affiliation, is there a common theme that led to their poor performance?

ALEC Chief Economist Jonathan Williams:
Governors at the bottom five were governors that advocated or in some cases really did enact tax increases on their hard working taxpayers in recent years. And let’s not forget right now states have so much money. You hear from so many state policymakers, “Well, we are sitting on so much money because of the federal bailouts.”  They don’t know how they’re going to spend it all. And in addition to the discussion in some of the top rank states about how to get that money back to taxpayers through tax cuts, what we’re seeing at the bottom end is they’re doubling down trying to grow government and in some cases, even trying to raise taxes cut off domestic energy production. These big government policies are clearly having an impact on their economies.