Illinois’ Quinn Gets ‘F’ in U.S. Governors Fiscal Report Card

-By Warner Todd Huston

Illinois ranks at the bottom of the nation in nearly every single category of rankings of successful states and now the Land of Lincoln can rack up yet another great failure. Illinois’ Governor, Pat Quinn, has received the grade of “F” in a new “fiscal report card” of the 50 states’ fiscal health.

Congratulations once again, Illinois. Your almost unbroken record of failure goes practically unchallenged. You are pretty much the worst of the worst in all of the country.

Oh, happy days.

So, once again Illinois rates at the bottom of the pile with a governor that gets a well-deserved failing grade. This time joined Quinn is joined at the bottom by four other guvs. Chris Gregoire (Washington State), Neil Abercrombie (Hawaii), Mark Dayton (Minnesota), and Dan Malloy (Connecticut), each received the grade of “F” for their monumental failure as their state’s chief executive.

Naturally, these five flunkers share one thing in common: they are all Democrats. In fact, the report card only identifies two Republicans among those governors getting a “D” or an “F.” Arizona’s Gov. Jan Brewer and Tennessee’s Bill Haslam both received a “D.”

The 11th annual report sponsored by the CATO Institute grades the nation’s governors on their records of taxing and spending.

Many states are facing major fiscal problems in coming years. Rising debt and growing health and pension costs threaten tax increases down the road. At the same time, intense global economic competition makes it imperative that states improve their investment climates. To that end, some governors are pursuing broad-based tax reforms, such as cutting income tax rates and reducing property taxes on businesses. The bad news is that many governors are expanding narrow “tax incentives,” which clutter the tax code in an attempt to micromanage the economy.

The top five governors get kudos for their success. Sam Brownback of Kansas, Rick Scott of Florida, Paul LePage of Maine, and Tom Corbett of Pennsylvania are all hailed for their good work. Like the worst of the worst, these successful governors also share something. But unlike the worst of the worst, these successful governors are all Republicans.

So, in what other categories does Illinois rank as the worst of the worst?

Here is a handy-dandy list of Quinn’s and the Democrat’s major failures:

Way to go Illinois, that’s quite an accomplishment.
“The only end of writing is to enable the reader better to enjoy life, or better to endure it.”
–Samuel Johnson

Warner Todd Huston is a Chicago based freelance writer. He has been writing opinion editorials and social criticism since early 2001 and before that he wrote articles on U.S. history for several small American magazines. His political columns are featured on many websites such as Andrew Breitbart’s,, and, as well as,,,,, among many, many others. Mr. Huston is also endlessly amused that one of his articles formed the basis of an article in Germany’s Der Spiegel Magazine in 2008.

For a full bio, please CLICK HERE.

Copyright Publius Forum 2001