Ballotpedia:Who Runs the States, Idaho

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Who Runs the States

Main Report Pages
Main PagePart 1Partisanship InfographicPart 2Part 3

Partisanship Results Report (Part 1)
Executive SummaryState Partisanship AnalysisPartisan Control of GovernorshipsPartisan Control of State LegislaturesPartisan Control of State SenatesPartisan Control of State HousesState Government TrifectasOverall Partisan Control: Bright, Medium and Soft StatesChanges of Partisan Domination over 22 yearsYear-to-Year Changes in State Partisan ControlTrifectas and Presidential Election PatternsConclusionMethodologyAppendix AAppendix B

State Quality of Life Index (SQLI) Report (Part 2)
Executive SummaryState Quality of Life Index (SQLI)About the IndexOverall RankingsDramatic Changes from 1st Half to 2nd HalfIndividual IndicatorsMethodologyAppendices

Partisanship and (SQLI) Overlay Report (Part 3)
IntroductionComparing Partisanship and the State Quality of Life Index (SQLI) RankingsDescription of the dataTrends and correlationsMethodologyKey Values for Fifty-State RegressionsAppendices
Praise or blame is extended to political parties for the economic, educational, health and other quality of life outcomes that result from the policies those parties enact into law. To better understand which political party enjoys power in each of the states, Ballotpedia has analyzed state government control from 1992-2013 using the concept of a "partisan trifecta." A partisan trifecta is defined as when a state's governorship and legislative chambers are controlled by the same political party.

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 Idaho 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

Idaho Governor

From 1992 to 2013, there were Democratic governors in office for the first three years while there were Republican governors in office for the last 19 years. Idaho is one of eight states that were run by a Republican governor for more than 80 percent of the years between 1992-2013. Idaho spent the last 19 years under Republican trifectas.

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.

Idaho Senate

From 1992 to 2013, the Republican Party was the majority in the Idaho State Senate. The Idaho State Senate is one of 13 state senates that was Republican 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.

Idaho House of Representatives

From 1992 to 2013, the Republican Party was the majority in the Idaho House of Representatives. The Idaho House of Representatives is one of 9 state Houses that was Republican for more than 80 percent of the years between 1992 and 2013.

Across the country, there were 577 Democratic and 483 Republican state houses of representatives from 1992 to 2013.

The chart below shows the partisan composition of the Office of the Governor of Idaho, the Idaho State Senate and the Idaho House of Representatives from 1992 to 2013.

Partisan composition of Idaho state government(1992-2013).PNG

Partisan control changes

There was one partisan control changes in Idaho during the study period. The average number of changes in the 50 states was four, putting Idaho below than the average.

Idaho legislature pie chart 1992-2013.png
Idaho government pie chart 1992-2013.png
Idaho gubernatorial pie chart 1992-2013.png

Part 2: State Quality of Life Index (SQLI)

Idaho’s average ranking over the course of the study period was 28.86, which puts it at 29 in the overall SQLI ranking.[1]

  • The year that Idaho had the highest ranking was 2007, in which it ranked 17th.
  • The years that Idaho had the lowest ranking were 1999 and 2000, in which it ranked 40th.
  • The index type that Idaho had the highest ranking in was Unemployment Rate, in which it ranked 5th.
  • The index type that Idaho had the lowest ranking in was Real GDP Per Capita, in which it ranked 45th.
Idaho SQLI 1992-2012
Index 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 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 28 26 22
America's Health Rankings 16 16 12 18 14 12 14 13 16 15 12 14 20 12 19 17 8 14 9 15 17
CAFR Debt/GDP 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 15 13 21 20 22 21 22 N/A
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 33 18 14 16 16 13 19 18
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 6 4 22 26 31 13
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 6 6 7 11 12 16 19
Govt. Employment Share Population 36 36 34 35 33 35 37 36 39 34 34 33 33 31 29 29 28 26 24 23 21
Graduation Rate 13 12 12 10 12 10 11 9 9 10 9 8 10 13 10 11 13 14 15 17 13
Personal Income Per Capita 42 38 39 37 39 43 41 40 41 40 41 43 41 43 42 43 45 49 49 49 49
Poverty Rate 31 24 25 33 25 37 30 41 36 30 27 19 12 12 13 17 24 29 23 36 N/A
Real GDP per capita 46 46 44 41 43 50 50 48 45 46 46 48 46 42 44 43 43 44 43 43 N/A
S&P Credit Rating N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 22 21 20 18 17 20 21 24 26 26 13 14
State Govt. Spending/GDP 31 21 22 25 31 38 35 34 30 32 30 28 28 28 29 28 33 32 30 31 N/A
State & local tax burden 41 37 37 33 33 36 37 40 41 33 33 31 33 30 28 29 32 26 26 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 32
Unemployment Rate 18 22 23 25 28 32 40 40 41 34 26 16 13 7 5 6 18 16 28 27 23
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 30 27 16 N/A
Voter Turnout 13 8 8 10 10 15 15 20 20 19 19 23 23 21 21 24 24 28 28 26 26
Well-Being Index 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 10 9 20 23 22

Part 3: Partisanship and SQLI Overlay

The chart below depicts the partisanship of the Idaho 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. Idaho never had a Democratic trifecta during the period of the study, but the state has had a Republican trifecta from 1995 to 2013, and before that divided government between 1992 and 1994. The Idaho state legislature has been in Republican hands since 1992. The state’s lowest SQLI ranking came near the bottom-10 class (40th) in 1999 and 2000 under a Republican trifecta, while its highest ranking (17th) also occurred under a Republican trifecta in 2007. Idaho made its largest leap in the SQLI ranking between the years 2011 and 2012, jumping nine spots in the SQLI ranking in a single year.

  • SQLI average with Democratic trifecta: N/A
  • SQLI average with Republican trifecta: 28.50
  • SQLI average with divided government: 31.00
Chart displaying the partisanship of Idaho government from 1992-2013 and the State Quality of Life Index (SQLI).

See also

Additional information

External links

Footnotes

  1. 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.