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Freedom in the 50 States: An Index of Personal and Economic Freedom

Freedom in the 50 States: An Index of Personal and Economic Freedom

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An Index of Personal andconomic reeom1 Edition
William P. Ruger andJason Sorens
To Caleb, Mason, and Adele—may they grow up in a world freer than that of their parents.
Copyright © 2013 William P. Ruger, Jason Sorens, and the Mercatus Center at GeorgeMason University. All rights reserved.Cover illustration by Joanna AndreassonMercatus CenterGeorge Mason University3351 Fairfax Drive, 4th FloorArlington, VA 22201-4433T: (703) 993-4930mercatus.orgLibrary of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication DataRuger, William.Freedom in the 50 states : an index of personal and economic freedom /William Ruger and Jason Sorens. -- 2013 edition.pages cmISBN 978-0-9836077-9-3 (pbk.)1. Liberty. 2. State governments--United States. 3. Fiscalpolicy--United States--States. 4. Liberty--Indexes. 5. Stategovernments--United States--Indexes. 6. Fiscal policy--UnitedStates--States--Indexes. I. Sorens, Jason, 1976- II. Title. III. Title:Freedom in the fifty states.JC599.U5R77 2013323.0973--dc232013006198First printing, March 2013Printed in the United States of America
Introduction 1Part 1: Dimensions of Freedom 10
Fiscal Policy 13Overall Fiscal Policy Ranking 24Regulatory Policy 27Overall Regulatory Policy Ranking 42Overall Economic Freedom Ranking 44Personal Freedom 47Overall Personal Freedom Ranking 74
Part 2: Politics of Freedom 76
Overall Freedom Ranking 79Change over Time 82Public Opinion and Freedom 86Freedom, Growth, and Migration 91
 Map of State Freedom Scores
92Conclusions 99
Part 3: Freedom State by State 102
 Acknowledgments 211 Appendix A: Coding Procedures 212 Appendix B: Dimension, Category, and Variable Weights 216Further Reading 220 About the Authors 223 About the Mercatus Center at George Mason University 224

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