Government Spending

Grading the Governors in 2010: Q&A with the Cato Institute's Chris Edwards

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How would you grade your governor?

Chris Edwards, the Cato Institute's director of tax policy studies, has analyzed and graded the fiscal records of 45 state governors.  The only A Students: South Carolina's Mark Sanford (R), Louisiana's Bobby Jindal (R), Minnesota's Tim Pawlenty (R), and West Virginia's Joe Manchin (D). Otherwise there were 15 B's, 8 C's, 11 D's and 7 F's.

Cato has been releasing its Fiscal Policy Report Card for over the past 20 years, tracking state and local budget's ballooning from the 1990s to the 2000s and an increase of A's and F's as governors struggle to find the best way to recover from years of overspending and mismanagement.

Approximately 9:30 minutes.

Shot by Jim Epstein and Meredith Bragg. Edited by Bragg.

Go to Reason.tv for downloadable versions and subscribe to Reason.tv's YouTube channel to receive automatic notification when new material goes live.

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  1. You forgot New Jersey.

    1. “It excludes the governors of Kansas, New Jersey, Virginia, and Utah because they have been in office for only a brief period of time.” P. 2.

      1. Crap, I was hoping they’d seceded, or been kicked out or something… 🙁

  2. My governor, Pat Quinn, only got an F? Can’t they give him like a G or an H?

    1. ^^ I’d second that!

    2. Know what sucks? I work in Illinois and have to pay taxes there, but I live in St. Louis, so I can’t even vote these pricks out of office.

      1. Don’t worry, with these new policies you may get the opportunity to work in Missouri or Indiana or Kentucky instead.

      2. You know what else sucks? You live in St. Louis. 😉

        1. Dammit… We need an option to check that reads: “This is a one-time joke handle; use previously-saved name, email and website for next comment.”

    3. What would you give NY’s Patterson then?

  3. Speaking of shitty governors, Spitzer might just have his own show soon. CNN, class act that it is, is cutting the non-scumbag from the show.

    1. Because the problem with a show featuring Eliot “Fucking Steamroller Number 9” Spitzer is the person other than Spitzer.

  4. Right now I’d give WA state governor Christine Gregoire a C-. But that’s an improvement since her recent comments basically saying that we have to cut and that new taxes are off the table. Her previous grade was “Get to the special ed class where you belong, tardball.”

    1. That’s your class, right?

      What is Gregoire going to do, anyway? Institute a state income tax? She has no choice but to cut, so I don’t give her much credit for making the decision that anyone in her position would have to make.

      1. Well no action has actually been taken yet, so the grade is in pencil.

        Don’t make fun of the challenged you mental midget.

        1. I’m sorry if I hurt your feelings; associating you with retards was merely reflexive. I could associate you with Warty instead; see how nice I am?

      2. She made a point of saying that she had no choice and that her budget was “immoral.” Translation: “You immoral voters refused to vote yourselves a tax increase.”

        Two more years and we can trade her in on a different slimeball.

  5. What, what, WHAT? Jennifer Granholm (Term-Limited-Out, Michigan) got a fucking C????!!

    Oh, wait – if she and the limp-dick legislature hadn’t used federal Obama Bucks to paper over the hole in the budget, we’d have had to cut services to Teh Poor and Needy…and/or raise taxes.

    So, fiscally, that was “C” work – cause she “created or saved”…government services. Or something.

    Seriously – when Michigan gets a “C” for anything related to gummint, I’m questioning the methodology. At least she’s gone – good luck, Gov. Snyder!

    1. MI is already – I think it’s – $1.8B in the hole, right out of the gate, for FY 2011. Haven’t cut the first check, and we’re in the hole a couple Bil. Cause the ass-fuck Gov. and legistards punted and papered over the problem for her last year in office using “federal money”. (which comes from WHERE?? DUH!)

      God, I hate politicians*.

      * Not in a manner which would result in physical harm to them or innocent bystanders.

      /Tucson

      1. What do I care about the fiscal state of Michigan? The AFL/CIO is looking out for me!

        1. Yeah, we represent STATE workers, too.

          Suck it, taxpayers!!! Hahahahahahahahaha!

    2. Shorter Me: GRANHOLM SUCKS!

  6. I’ve got hope for Ohio’s new governor. Which is probably just more proof that I’m an idiot.

  7. “How would you grade your governor?”

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    1. Heh heh!

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  9. So fat-assed Eddie Rendell, alleged football savant and connoisseur of the cheese steak, managed a D? Talk about grade inflation!

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  11. “You forgot New Jersey.”

    Than I’ll gladly excoriate that fatass RINO gun-grabbing SOB who has Joisey dimwits all aflutter because they are easily afluttered by smooth talking assholes.

    There. No charge,

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  15. A Students: South Carolina’s Mark Sanford (R), Louisiana’s Bobby Jindal (R), Minnesota’s

  16. 990s to the 2000s and an increase of A’s and F’s as governors struggle to find the best way to r

  17. 1990s to the 2000s and an increase o

  18. Minnesota’s Tim Pawlenty (R), and West Virginia’s Joe Manchin (D). Otherwise there were

  19. policy studies, has analyzed and graded the fiscal records of 45 state governors. The only A Students:

  20. The only A Students: South Carolina’s Mark Sanford (R), Louisiana’s Bobby Jindal

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