State Income Equality

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States with the most income equality tend to be Republican states.[1] The following is a ranking of states by income equality according to the GINI Coefficient where a rank of 1 is most income equality and 50 is least income equality. Also shown are state Democratic advantages according to Gallup,[2] Representatives/Senators in Congress by party,[3] party breakdown in the state legislature,[4] and how they voted in the 2012 presidential election.[5] Ultimately 12 of the 20 states with most income equality had Republican advantages according to Gallup polling.

List of States by Income Equality

Determination of whether a state is Republican or Democrat is based solely on the Gallup data (Democrat Advantage); the state's ratios for Congress, the state legislature, and 2012 presidential election results are merely provided for informational purposes. For example, Colorado, New Hampshire, Iowa, and Virginia all voted for Obama in 2012 but Gallup polling reveals they are primarily Republican, and thus they are labeled Republican here, particularly since their legislative elections reveal them to be Republican. On the other hand Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin have elected more Republicans at both the state and federal levels than Democrats, but are labeled as Democrat states because Gallup polling shows they have Democrat Advantages. States which could be classified as definite swing states include Colorado, New Hampshire, Ohio, and Wisconsin.

RANK STATE GINI PARTY DEM. ADV. CONGRESS STATE LEG. ROMNEY VOTE OBAMA VOTE
1 Utah .425 Republican -32% 6/6 R 85/104 R 73% 25%
2 Alaska .432 Republican -20% 3/3 R 37/60 55% 41%
3 Hawaii .435 Democrat 24% 4/4 D 67/76 D 28% 71%
4 New Hampshire .435 Republican -4% 2/4 R 253/424 R 46% 52%
5 Wyoming .437 Republican -40% 3/3 R 77/90 R 69% 28%
6 Iowa .439 Republican -2% 5/6 R 80/149 R 46% 52%
7 Wisconsin .441 Democrat 1% 6/10 R 80/130 R 46% 53%
8 South Dakota .444 Republican -17% 3/3 R 84/103 R 58% 40%
9 Vermont .445 Democrat 19% 3/3 D 118/180 D 31% 67%
10 Nebraska .447 Republican -16% 4/5 R NP 61% 38%
11 Minnesota .449 Democrat 6% 7/10 D 101/201 D 45% 53%
12 Indiana .452 Republican -4% 8/11 R 111/150 54% 44%
13T Delaware .452 Democrat 17% 3/3 D 37/62 D 40% 59%
13T Maine .452 Democrat 6% 2/4 D 98/186 D 41% 56%
15 Maryland .452 Democrat 20% 9/10 D 123/188 D 37% 62%
16 Idaho .453 Republican -24% 4/4 R 84/105 R 65% 33%
17 Nevada .455 Democrat 3% 4/6 R 38/63 R 46% 52%
18 Washington .456 Democrat 7% 8/12 D 75/147 D 42% 56%
19 Colorado .458 Republican -4% 5/9 R 50/100 R 47% 51%
20 West Virginia .458 Democrat 1% 4/5 R 82/134 62% 36%
21 Kansas .460 Republican -21% 6/6 R 130/165 R 60% 38%
22 Oregon .462 Democrat 7% 6/7 D 53/90 D 43% 54%
23 Montana .463 Republican -13% 1/2 R 88/150 R 55% 42%
24 Missouri .463 Republican -3% 7/10 R 142/196 R 54% 44%
25 Ohio .464 Democrat 0% 13/18 R 83/132 R 48% 50%
26 North Dakota .466 Republican -25% 2/3 R 104/143 R 59% 39%
27 Michigan .467 Democrat 9% 9/16 R 90/148 R 45% 54%
28 Virginia .468 Republican -1% 8/13 R 89/140 R 48% 51%
29 Pennsylvania .469 Democrat 3% 14/20 R 149/253 R 47% 52%
30 South Carolina .470 Republican -10% 8/9 R 103/167 R 55% 44%
31T Arizona .470 Republican -1% 7/11 R 53/90 R 54% 44%
31T Oklahoma .470 Republican -13% 7/7 R 112/149 R 67% 33%
33 Rhode Island .473 Democrat 23% 4/4 D 97/113 D 36% 63%
34 Mississippi .476 Republican -6% 5/6 R 98/174 R 56% 44%
35 Arkansas .477 Republican -4% 6/6 R 87/134 R 61% 37%
36 North Carolina .478 Republican -1% 12/15 R 109/170 R 51% 48%
37 Kentucky .478 Democrat 2% 7/8 R 72/135 61% 38%
38 Tennessee .479 Republican -7% 9/11 R 100/132 R 59% 39%
39 New Mexico .480 Democrat 11% 4/5 D 58/112 D 43% 53%
40 Georgia .480 Republican -3% 12/16 R 155/234 R 53% 45%
41 Alabama .481 Republican -11% 8/9 R 98/129 R 61% 38%
42 Illinois .482 Democrat 17% 11/20 D 110/177 D 41% 57%
43 Texas .482 Republican -4% 27/38 R 118/181 R 57% 41%
44 New Jersey .483 Democrat 16% 8/14 D 72/120 41% 58%
45 Massachusetts .485 Democrat 21% 11/11 D 159/200 D 38% 61%
46 Florida .487 Democrat 5% 18/29 R 103/155 R 49% 50%
47 California .488 Democrat 18% 41/55 D 78/120 D 38% 59%
48 Louisiana .491 Republican -2% 7/8 R 85/144 58% 41%
49 Connecticut .492 Democrat 16% 7/7 D 108/187 D 40% 58%
50 New York .514 Democrat 25% 20/28 D 137/213 36% 63%

Notes

  • Nebraska's state legislature is Nonpartisan/Unicameral and thus party breakdown cannot be provided, this is indicated by a value of "NP."
  • Since Independents overwhelmingly caucus as Democrats, they were classified as Democrats when counting Congress/State Legislature ratios. The only state really affected by this was Vermont which had 11 Independents at the state level and 1 at the federal level.
  • A "T" at the end of a rank indicates a tie between states for that rank.

Analysis

Gallup polling generally lines up with how states voted for president in 2012. While states have increasingly become more Republican since 2012, the Gallup polling largely represents the ideology which has governed state employment in recent years, and a state's identity is generally clear. There are two states which should arguably be identified as Republican despite Gallup polling indicating they are narrowly Democrat, Kentucky and West Virginia. According to Gallup they narrowly polled Democrat, with 2% and 1% Democrat advantages respectively, yet both have elected more Republicans to both the state and federal legislature, and voted for Romney in 2012.

Sources

  1. List of U.S. States by GINI Coefficient. Wikipedia. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_U.S._states_by_Gini_coefficient#List_of_U.S._states_by_Gini_coefficient_of_income_inequality>
  2. Saad, L. (2014, January 29). Not as Many U.S. States Lean Democratic in 2013. Gallup. <http://www.gallup.com/poll/167030/not-states-lean-democratic-2013.aspx>
  3. Members of Congress: North Dakota. GovTrack.us. <https://www.govtrack.us/congress/members/ND>
  4. Legislative Control 2015. StateScape. <http://www.statescape.com/resources/partysplits/partysplits.aspx>
  5. 2012 Presidential Race. NBC News. <http://elections.nbcnews.com/ns/politics/2012/all/president>