Governor Deal Earns Gentleman’s “C” For Economic Growth From Cato

The Cato Institute, a Washington D.C. think tank with Libertarian roots, released a report card of the nation’s Governors today and gives Governor Deal a grade of “C”, with 22 Governors scoring better and 22 scoring worse.  Cato essentially looks at Georgia’s performance and says “meh”.

Governor Deal does get a positive mention from the group for eliminating the state’s sales tax on energy:

“Georgia Governor Nathan Deal notes correctly that ‘because the sales tax is intended to be a tax on consumption, it should not be applied to business inputs.’ 12  Deal signed legislation to end sales taxes on energy used in manufacturing.”

The Governors of Kansas, Florida, Maine, and Pennsylvania received grades of “A”, while Washington, Hawaii, Minnesota, Connecticut, and Illinois received failing grades of “F”.  You can read the full report here. 


  1. John Konop says:

    I think the grade is unfair via the investment into vocational jobs. BTW that is estimated to be the fastest growing part of the job market and the most openings now. If we coordinated it better within high schools combined with waivers for No Child Left Behind, this could be a real job engine. With job openings in this field it is very low hanging fruit if executed right. If we could get a comprehensive plan on infrastructure that is design right, I would move his grade from B to A.

    • Stefan says:

      Right but Cato’s methodology is really just cover for a cursory review of spending increases and tax cuts. If taxes and spending went up, D or F, if they went down, A or B, if they stayed the same, C.

      The rest is just pseudo-intellectual cover.

      • John Konop says:

        I agree, and it is very short sided view of major driving factors. Obviously if we have lots of job openings in vocational, and people not trained, tax policy and or cuts cannot fix it, training does! The fastest way out is getting people trained to work for the job openings. That is why cuts and taxes is very simplistic view of economics.

  2. IndyInjun says:


    The legislature promised $ billions in retirement, health care, and other benefits to employees and retirees. Standing behind those promises was a very toughly-construed regimen of limited sales tax exemptions that one figures were worth $600 million a year. In three major steps the legislature gave away these tax revenues and replaced them with NOTHING. Wouldn’t fiscal conservatism and a mandatory balanced budget dictate that the legislature have gone to the employees and teachers requiring offsetting cuts? MATH is a terrible taskmaster and it doesn’t trifle with fools, politicians, or those trusting either of the first 2 categories.

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