Friday, October 26, 2012

Not Mississippi, but Darn Close. Wisconsin is 47th in Economic Growth Since January 2011

Here is the pledge Governor Walker made at the start of his inaugural address:
And as your Governor, I make this pledge:
Wisconsin is open for business. We will work tirelessly to restore economic growth and vibrancy to our state. My top three priorities are jobs, jobs, and jobs.
We will right-size state government by ensuring government is providing only the essential services our citizens need and taxpayers can afford. My fellow state workers, I invite you to partner with me in this necessary work.
Reasonable minds might differ on whether the governor has achieved his promise to "right-size" state government.  But it is difficult to find any indication that the governor's policies have restored economic growth and vibrancy to Wisconsin.

This past Tuesday the Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank issued its Coincident Index for each of the fifty states for September 2012.   The coincident index is a measure of the growth of state economies.  Since Governor Walker's inauguration in January the economies of the fifty states taken as a group have grown at a rate six times the rate of growth of Wisconsin's economy.  Here is how Wisconsin's economic growth rate compares to our Midwestern neighbors over the twenty months since the governor came to office:

So Wisconsin's rate of economic growth is less than one-tenth that of Ohio,  less than one-eighth of Indiana's, and one-fifth of Illinois'.    Only three states have had slower rates of economic growth since January 2011:  Alaska, Delaware and Mississippi.  Remember back in February and March of last year when protestors around the state capitol in Madison carried signs accusing the governor of trying to remake Wisconsin into the Mississippi of the Midwest, "Wississippi?"  Well, we aren't Mississippi on the Philly Fed's Coincident Index.  We beat them out by one one hundredths of a percent!!

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