Government integrity by State


Government integrity

An investigation of integrity of State governments found only three states (Alaska, California, Connecticut) with grades higher than D+; eleven States (22%) flunked. Here is the naughty list:

  1. Maine
  2. Michigan
  3. South Dakota
  4. Oklahoma
  5. Louisiana
  6. Nevada
  7. Oregon
  8. Wyoming
  9. Pennsylvania
  10. Delaware
  11. Kansas

Fourteen States (28%) have term limits for legislators.

  1. Florida
  2. Maine
  3. Michigan
  4. Colorado
  5. Ohio
  6. South Dakota
  7. Montana
  8. Arizona
  9. Mississippi
  10. Oklahoma
  11. Louisiana
  12. Nebraska
  13. Nevada
  14. Oregon

Of the fourteen States with term limits, six (Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Nevada, Oklahoma, South Dakota) flunked the integrity test. Thus more than forty percent of States with term limits flunked while twenty-two percent of all states flunked.

Correlation doesn’t imply causality–we can’t conclude that corruption leads to term limits or that term limits cause corruption, but there are reasons to expect term limits to encourage corruption:

  1. Term limited legislators needn’t worry about reelection, they are free of that restraint.
  2. Term limited legislators have limited time to sell their office, they must hurry.
  3. Term limited legislators take a short term view, in a short time they will be out.

In spite of a reputation for corruption, NYS was not among the States which flunked. Some NYS offices, not the legislature, had good records.

About whungerford

* Contributor at where we discuss the politics, economics, and events of the New New York 23rd Congressional District (Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Chemung, (Eastern) Ontario, Schuyler, Seneca, Steuben,Tioga, Tompkins, and Yates Counties) Please visit and comment on whatever strikes your fancy.
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