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Policy
It might surprise Trump supporters that they enjoy a greater portion of federal expenditures to states than the population in the Blue states, particularly in view of the tax contributions of citizens in each set of states.  In fact, Citizens in Blue states appear to occupy different economic worlds than those in Red states, and the data show the Red state participants are experiencing more of economic strain in the current administration.  Red states are also less racially diverse than blue states with an average of 27% non-white compared to 50% of residents who are non-white in Blue states.   Yet Red state are more of a drain on the federal government accounting for a bigger portion of  benefits in federal aid programs—including food assistance, housing, disabilities, and Medicaid the return is more substantial in the red states which typically get a return of $1.71 – $2.13 on dollars contributed compared to blue state which generally get between 74-83 cents on the dollar. Red states, with high dependency on the federal government, 13 of the 15 highest utilizing states, voted for Trump white 10 of the 15 states least dependent on federal aid went for Clinton in 2016.  Red states also receive more support in their share of federal jobs and the portion of federal funds comprising state revenues.  Red counties which voted for Trump have seen an increase in job growth of 2.6% in 2017-18, while the growth rate in blue counties going for Clinton was 2.1%.  The issue is that these red state areas have had sluggish economic growth and the wages are low and the jobs ripe for automation.  Blue states also fare better in quality of life studies which include, among other things, employment, job growth, economic development, cost of living, government solvency, and livability.

Analysis
Contrary to what the media might suggest, especially conservative media, the largest gap between Red and Blue states lies in economic deficiencies not in racial differences.  In fact, Blue states have a greater share of non-whites and a smaller share of aid from the federal government.  They also have higher education levels in their population, with 35% of their population possessing college degrees compared with 28% in Red states.  The Blue states are more economically productive with output averaging 22% per worker compared to 15% for red states.   Blue state workers are also less likely to be working in manufacturing.  In the first year of Trump’s administration, disparities between Blue and Red states grew with blue states having greater rates of labor force participation and job creation.

Resistance Resources:

https://www.rockthevote.org/action-center/volunteer/  An organization working to get voters registered and engaged.  The best way for the Democrats to win is to show up in large numbers.

 

Photo by unsplash-logoPatrick Tomasso

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