No, 9 of the 10 Poorest States are not Republican

Propaganda: The 10 Poorest States in America are run by Republicans! This proves their policies don’t work!


This propaganda started in September of 2011 (ahead of an election cycle) by Jack Cafferty of CNN. Cafferty’s claim has been thoroughly debunked.

It raised its head, again, in 2014 (ahead of an election cycle) when posted by Occupy Democrats on Facebook and, not surprisingly, was rated as “True” by left-leaning Politifact.

The meme goes like this: 9 out of the 10 poorest states are Republican. Therefore, Republican policies don’t work.

Where does “policy” come from? It comes from government; Governors and Legislatures. So let’s take a look at the 10 poorest states and their current governments:

  1. Mississippi: (R) Governor, (R) Senate, (R) House of Representatives
  2. West Virginia: (D) Governor, (D) Senate, (D) House of Delegates
  3. Arkansas: (D) Governor, (R) Senate, (R) House of Representatives
  4. Kentucky: (D) Governor, (R) Senate, (D) House of Representatives
  5. Alabama: (R) Governor, (R) Senate, (R) House of Representatives
  6. Tennessee: (R) Governor, (R) Senate, (R) House of Representatives
  7. Louisiana: (R) Governor, (R) Senate, (R) House of Representatives
  8. New Mexico: (R) Governor, (D) Senate, (D) House of Representatives
  9. South Carolina: (R) Governor, (R) Senate, (R) House of Representatives
  10. Oklahoma: (R) Governor, (R) Senate, (R) House of Representatives

Of these top ten, Democrats currently control 3 Governorships, and 5 legislative bodies. Government is shared between Democrats and Republicans in 3 out of the 10 and the second poorest state is completely controlled by Democrats.

So, how do progressives claim 9 of the 10 poorest states are Republican? By redefining what a “Republican State” is.

At the top of the Politifact article, they write: “We’ll start with the standard definition of a Red State: one that voted for the Republican Candidate in the most recent presidential election.”

Whoa, wait a minute. The meme doesn’t say “Red States” it says “Republican”. And it’s used to claim Republican Policy doesn’t work. What does voting for a GOP president in the last election have to do with the economic effects of state government policies?

This is a typical Progressive deception: if the reality of a thing is inconvenient, simply change the definition of that thing (see Global Warming to Climate Change).

It’s also important to know that, until recently, the South was controlled by Democrats for a very long time (from Reconstruction until the early 2000s). Republicans didn’t hold majorities in the South until after the 2010 elections. So if we’re indicting policies, here, shouldn’t we be looking at centuries of Democrat rule, not just years of Republican rule? And why did the South switch from Democrat to Republican if Democrat policies were working so well?

And this is largely nonsense anyway, as the roots of Southern Poverty stem from the Civil War and Reconstruction, not policies enacted over the last few years.

And then there’s this: Blue States (states that voted for Obama in 2008) have done much worse economically than Red States.

  • Job Growth: Blue 1.2%, Red 1.9%
  • Unemployment: Blue 8.5%, Red 7.4%
  • Income: 4.27%, Red 4.35%
  • Home Prices: Blue -18.5%, Red -7.5%
  • Gas prices: Blue states 5% higher than Red States

The only economic indicator that was better in Blue States than Red States was GDP growth (2.5% vs 2.2%). Unless you’re a politician, jobs, income, home values, and gas prices probably mean more to you than GDP.

You can ignore the roots of Southern Poverty, you can ignore that these poor states were controlled by Democrats for nearly two centuries, and you can ignore that recent economic trends are much better in Red States than Blue States, but you can’t ignore that 9 out of the 10 poorest states are not governed by Republicans.

And, so, this meme is just bunk.


  1. WRONG. Nice try though.
    “It is difficult for reasonable Americans to comprehend why voters in the South continue electing Republicans that campaign on perpetuating living conditions most Americans consider unacceptable. It is not because they believe all Americans live in poverty and love it, or that they are unaware their miserable plight is unavoidable. Most likely they are willing to live in poverty and ill-health with no chance of escaping because they are angry the rest of the nation will not tolerate their bigotry and hate; their only recourse is electing Republicans to legislate America into one big red state mired in bigotry, religion, guns, and deep poverty.”


  2. Instead of making it all about a deliberately polarizing Republican/Democrat arguement, lets talk about the hard facts that affect all of us, and which get buried by the ‘debate’ between the 2 corrupt political ‘choices’.

    USA = Richest country on the planet

    USA = Highest global percentage of national population who are illiterate

    Conclusion : The USA deliberately fails in educating it’s populace in order to keep the wealth in the hands of the 1% of the country’s population who possess 90% of its wealth & assets.

    It’s not about red/blue or black/white, it’s about a system that fucks the poor whatever their race or political leaning. Take the party political blinkers off & wake up to that truth.
    Everything else is mere distraction, just busy work to keep morons distracted whilst our masters count their ill-gotten gains & dream up new ways to ream us.
    Far better to die on your feet than to live on your knees.

    The One Eyed King
    c/o Land Of The Blind


  3. Anonymous · · Reply

    Love how the author’s main comments make all of his work a waste of time.


  4. I could just destroy this piece by pointing out the slew of logical fallacies this article has committed and the overwhelming degree of partisanship thereof, but I think it will suffice to note that Forbes (the source used for this article) has already admitted that 9/10 Republican States are poor, and has made a desperate attempt at trying to reconcile this fact using outdated and oversimplistic economic analysis:


  5. lol you can not JUST TAKE A GOVERNOR ship that changes every 4 years and say that they are not red states..the truth is for the last 100 years these same states have been the poorest states…..and yes they vote republican over and over… this the only reason that these states are the poorest probably not….but there is no doubt that red states pay is lower overall, income is lower overall, and overall they take more federal money then blue states…… you debunking has been debunked…..not too worry people who read this will follow along…


    1. actually they used to vote democrat and the North used to be republican…….that is why Lincoln got no support in the South back in 1860…..but it has flipped today…..Lincoln was about as much republican by today’s definition as President Obama…..another hated politician in the South…being on the wrong side of history all the time must get frustrating….


  6. Reblogged this on MoralNorth.


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