Mary Mahling

Infographic: A Turning Point for Gay Marriage?

By: , and - May 4, 2012

Thirty-four times since 1998, states have voted on gay marriage ballot measures. Thirty-three of those times, opponents of gay marriage have won. But with polls showing support for gay marriage building in recent years, that near-perfect record of voter opposition will be seriously tested this year. The first test this year came on Tuesday, May […]

Infographic: Have Gambling Investments Paid Off?

By: and - February 23, 2012

Return to related story “Gambling revenue promises rarely met”

Infographic: How a European Recession Could Hit State Economies

By: and - December 2, 2011

Economists are increasingly concerned that Europe’s debt crisis will result in economic contraction across the continent. Will the fiscal pain impact U.S. states? Some states more than others, concludes a recent report by Wells Fargo Securities. The report looks at exports of goods from the 50 states to Europe — not a perfect measure of state […]

Interactive: A state-by-state look at voter ID laws for 2012 elections

By: - November 4, 2011

When Mississippi decides on Initiative 27 next week, voters will determine whether or not they’ll have to show photo identification the next time they go to the polls. The election on Nov. 8 will be the final act of what has been a dramatic year for voter ID laws. According to the National Conference of […]

Infographic: Southern Strength

By: , and - October 17, 2011

Read the related story “Democrats face a reckoning in Deep South legislatures”.

Infographic: State and Local Employment Is Down, But Not Everywhere

By: and - October 7, 2011

There are nearly half a million fewer state and local employees now than there were three years ago, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. An annual employment survey conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau gives an indication of where some of those cuts were made. There were nearly 9,000 fewer firefighters and police […]

Infographic: How California Redevelopment Agencies Work

By: - October 5, 2011

With strict property tax limitations written into California law, local governments have relied on redevelopment agencies for the past three decades to make up much of the difference in revenue. That’s why Governor Jerry Brown’s proposal to eliminate these agencies struck many local officials as an insensitive move. Back to “In California, a state and […]

Infographic: Local Government By The Numbers

By: and - October 4, 2011

More than two centuries of American democracy have resulted in a profusion of governments at the local level, not only cities and counties but villages and townships, park districts and sanitary districts and a host of others. To those trying desperately to bring a state’s budget into balance, many of these are useless anachronisms incapable […]

Infographic: A Brief History of S&P’s State Credit Ratings

By: and - August 12, 2011

Last week, Standard & Poor’s downgraded the federal government’s AAA credit rating. While Washington had never experienced the sting of a downgrade before, California, Illinois, Michigan and New Jersey are all too familiar with the feeling, as this Stateline look at the past ten years of S&P state credit ratings actions shows. Overall, however, states […]

Sales Tax Holidays Arrive, Despite Economists’ Grumblings

By: - August 5, 2011

This weekend begins a summertime rite of passage for some states: the sales tax holiday. Some 17 states this year are temporarily waiving their sales taxes on clothing, backpacks and other items deemed essential for students headed back to school. Though sales tax holidays are popular with shoppers, economists have long complained that the events […]

Infographic: How a Federal Default Would Hit States

By: and - July 29, 2011

If the federal government begins defaulting on its obligations next week, it will clearly have some impact on states. The question nobody knows the answer to is: How much? A lot would depend on how the U.S. Treasury decides to prioritize its payments, as this analysis  from the Bipartisan Policy Center makes clear. In some […]

How Many Governors Are Using Social Media?

By: - July 22, 2011

Not long ago state governments were ambivalent about using social media to connect with citizens. Those days are over, if the use of the most popular sites by the nation’s governors is any guide. Some 47 of the 50 governors are using Facebook and Twitter, according to a recent Stateline examination of these services; 27 […]