Ballotpedia:Who Runs the States, Idaho
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
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.
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.
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.
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.
- 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|
|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|
|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|
|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|
|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|
|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|
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
- Ballotpedia:Who runs the states
- Governor of Idaho
- Idaho State Senate
- Idaho 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 Idaho
|State executive officers||
Governor | Lieutenant Governor | Attorney General | Secretary of State | Controller | Treasurer | Superintendent of Public Instruction | Director of Insurance | Director of Agriculture | Director of Lands | Director of Labor | Public Utilities Commission |