Ballotpedia:Who Runs the States, Virginia

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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 Virginia 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

Virginia Governor

From 1992 to 2013, in Virginia there were Democratic governors in office for 10 years while there were Republican governors in office for 12 years, including the last four. Virginia was under Republican trifectas for the last two 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.

Virginia Senate

From 1992 to 2013, the Democratic Party was the majority in the Virginia State Senate for eight years while the Republicans were the majority for 12 years.

Across the country, there were 541 Democratic and 517 Republican state senates from 1992 to 2013.

Virginia House of Representatives

From 1992 to 2013, the Democratic Party was the majority in the Virginia State House of Representatives for the first four years while the Republicans were the majority for the last 14 years.

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 Virginia, the Virginia State Senate and the Virginia House of Representatives from 1992 to 2013.

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

Partisan control changes

There were seven partisan control changes in Virginia during the study period. The average number of changes in the 50 states was four, putting Virginia higher than the average.

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

Part 2: State Quality of Life Index (SQLI)

Virginia’s average ranking over the course of the study period was 9.00, which puts it at 7 in the overall SQLI ranking.[1]

  • The year that Virginia had the highest ranking was 2006, in which it ranked 1st.
  • The year that Virginia had the lowest ranking was 1997, in which it ranked 26th.
  • The index types that Virginia had the highest ranking in were Forbes’ Best State and S&P Credit Rating, in which it ranked 1st.
  • The index type that Virginia had the lowest ranking in was Government Employment Share of the Population, in which it ranked 41st.
Virginia 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 7 8 9
America's Health Rankings 21 20 22 23 22 23 23 19 21 23 22 23 21 23 20 20 21 21 22 23 21
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 22 19 21 20 17 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 9 7 9 4 7 4 7 6
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 1 2 1 2 1 3
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 1 1 1 1 2 2 2
Govt. Employment Share Population 44 44 43 42 41 41 41 41 41 41 41 41 41 40 40 40 40 40 40 40 40
Graduation Rate 29 28 30 30 32 30 18 17 22 19 19 15 15 21 13 18 18 31 29 23 20
Personal Income Per Capita 13 12 11 14 14 14 14 13 12 10 11 9 9 6 8 7 8 6 7 8 8
Poverty Rate 4 4 16 13 31 27 4 11 9 9 16 18 9 6 7 4 14 9 8 11 N/A
Real GDP per capita 15 15 15 15 15 15 14 14 14 9 10 10 11 10 9 12 10 8 9 10 N/A
S&P Credit Rating N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1
State Govt. Spending/GDP 3 1 4 5 6 6 8 8 6 6 4 4 4 4 4 4 7 4 3 4 N/A
State & local tax burden 24 22 21 24 24 24 27 30 30 26 26 26 25 27 23 28 26 22 21 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 39
Unemployment Rate 15 12 13 15 12 11 3 2 1 5 8 5 5 4 3 7 8 11 7 9 13
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 29 22 20 N/A
Voter Turnout 37 22 22 33 33 50 50 33 33 50 50 30 30 24 24 13 13 40 40 7 7
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 17 12 21 15 14

See also

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.