We've already noted that two states with extreme governors, Kansas and Wisconsin, are hurting economically. Talking Points Memo noticed it too. In a story today, TPM points out that Gov. Sam Brownback has been like a baby with a nail gun on Kansas' economy:
His biggest experiment in his laboratory has been a series of major tax bills that shift the impact of taxes down the income spectrum, cutting income taxes and corporate taxes and leaning more heavily on sales taxes.
The only problem? The fiscal disaster his changes created:
“Kansas is now hundreds of millions of dollars short in revenue collection, its job growth has lagged the rest of the nation, and Moody's has cut the state's bond rating. ‘Governor Brownback came in here with an agenda to reduce the size of government, reduce taxes, and create a great economic boom,’ says University of Kansas professor Burdett Loomis. ‘Now there's been a dramatic decline in revenues, no great increase in economic activity, and we've got red ink until the cows come home.’”Gov. Rick Perry claims a 'Texas Miracle' results from low taxes, low regulation, tort reform, and “don’t spend all the money.” Some miracle. According to Washington Monthly,
The state may offer low housing prices compared to California and an unemployment rate below the national average, but it also has low rates of economic mobility, minimal public services, and, unless you are rich, taxes that are as high or higher than most anywhere else in America. And worse, despite all the oil money sloshing around, Texas is no longer gaining on the richest states in its per capita income, but rather getting comparatively poorer and poorer.And then there's Wisconsin. TPM notes,
Finally, no description of the failed experiments of conservative governors is complete without noting the sad record of Wisconsin’s Scott Walker, who went to great and campaign-finance-law-stretching lengths to gain and hold his office. He promised that his agenda would deliver economic growth and bountiful new jobs; the reality has fallen far short. As Marc Levine writes, not only have Walker’s policies not delivered the 250,000 jobs he claimed they would, they may have actually held back job growth in the state, as Wisconsin’s economy falls behind those of its neighbors.