Ballotpedia:Who Runs the States, Vermont
The two major political parties claim that their policies will lead to better outcomes. What does the data show?
At Ballotpedia, we explored these issues in a three-part study, Who Runs the States.
This page takes a specific look at how Vermont performed in the study.
Background about the study
- See also: Ballotpedia: Who Runs the States
Part One examines the partisanship of state government from 1992-2013. Part Two establishes a State Quality of Life Index (SQLI), aggregating a variety of existing state indices into one measurement. Part Three will overlay the two reports, looking for trends and correlations.
Part 1: Partisanship analysis
From 1992 to 2013, Vermont had Democratic governors in office for 14 years, including the last three, while there were Republican governors in office for eight years. Vermont was under Democratic trifectas for the last three years of the study period.
Across the country, there were 493 years of Democratic governors (44.82%) and 586 years of Republican governors (53.27%) from 1992-2013.
Over the course of the 22-year study, state governments became increasingly more partisan. At the outset of the study period (1992), 18 of the 49 states with partisan legislatures had single-party trifectas and 31 states had divided governments. In 2013, only 13 states have divided governments, while single-party trifectas held sway in 36 states, the most in the 22 years studied.
From 1992 to 2013, the Democratic Party was the majority in the Vermont State Senate for 18 years while the Republicans were the majority for four years. The Vermont State Senate is one of 16 state senates that was Democratic for more than 80 percent of the years between 1992-2013.
Across the country, there were 541 Democratic and 517 Republican state senates from 1992 to 2013.
Vermont House of Representatives
From 1992 to 2013, the Democratic Party was the majority in the Vermont State House of Representatives for 17 years while the Republicans were the majority for five years. Vermont was under Democratic trifectas for the final three years of the study.
Across the country, there were 577 Democratic and 483 Republican state houses of representatives from 1992 to 2013.
Partisan control changes
There were five partisan control changes in Vermont during the study period. The average number of changes in the 50 states was four, putting Vermont slightly higher than the average.
Part 2: State Quality of Life Index (SQLI)
Vermont’s average ranking over the course of the study period was 22.43, which puts it at 22 in the overall SQLI ranking.
- The years that Vermont had the highest ranking were 2003 and 2004, in which it ranked 15th.
- The year that Vermont had the lowest ranking was 2008, in which it ranked 33rd.
- The index types that Vermont had the highest ranking in were 24/7 Wall Street’s Best and Worst Governed States and Graduation Rate, in which it ranked 6th.
- The index type that Vermont had the lowest ranking in was CAFR Debt/GDP, in which it ranked 49th.
|Vermont SQLI 1992-2012|
|24/7 Wall St Best/Worst Governed States||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||4||7||8|
|America's Health Rankings||15||11||8||7||12||17||17||16||12||11||10||4||2||2||3||1||4||1||1||1||1|
|Chief Executive Magazine Best and Worst States for Business Survey||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||36||43||44||36||36||36||40||38|
|CNBC Top States for Business||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||38||39||30||37||44||39|
|Forbes Best States for Business||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||30||32||36||47||45||45||44|
|Govt. Employment Share Population||24||24||25||24||26||27||26||27||30||31||32||37||37||39||39||39||39||39||39||38||39|
|Personal Income Per Capita||30||31||33||33||34||33||32||30||29||24||24||24||23||23||21||22||26||20||19||21||21|
|Real GDP per capita||33||33||37||39||40||44||44||43||39||39||39||39||38||39||38||39||38||35||33||33||N/A|
|S&P Credit Rating||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||11||11||10||10||10||10||10||12||12||12||13||14|
|State Govt. Spending/GDP||43||42||41||42||42||40||41||43||48||48||45||48||47||49||49||50||49||48||48||50||N/A|
|State & local tax burden||45||43||44||38||38||42||42||38||38||41||41||39||39||47||47||43||41||40||38||N/A||N/A|
|Tax Freedom Day||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||38|
|Unfunded Pension Liabilities per capita||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||33||32||33||N/A|
Part 3: Partisanship and SQLI Overlay
The chart below depicts the partisanship of the Vermont state government and the state's SQLI ranking for the years studied. For the SQLI, the states were ranked from 1-50, with 1 being the best and 50 the worst. During the course of the study, Vermont had Democratic trifectas from 1997-2000 and from 2011-2013. Its lowest ranking, finishing 33rd, occurred in 2008 during a divided government. Its highest ranking, finishing 15th, also occurred during a divided government from 2003-2004.
- Ballotpedia:Who runs the states
- Governor of Vermont
- Vermont State Senate
- Vermont House of Representatives
- Note: The average rank is compiled by adding up all years of rankings and then dividing by 21 to obtain the average state ranking. This average figure is ranked relative to the rest of the 49 states to derive an overall SQLI ranking.
State of Vermont
|State executive officers||
Governor | Lieutenant Governor | Attorney General | Secretary of State | Treasurer | State Auditor | Commissioner of Education | Commissioner of Insurance | Secretary of Agriculture, Food & Markets | Secretary of Natural Resources | Commissioner of Labor | Chairman of Public Service Board |