At Least 37 States Will Be Under Single-Party Control In 2013 — A 60-Year High


For the first time in 60 years, the state governments of at least 37 states will be under the control of a single party. That’s more than two-thirds of states, as The New York Times reports.

The shift is “raising the prospect that bold partisan agendas — on both ends of the political spectrum — will flourish over the next couple of years.” Per the Times:

Though the Nov. 6 election maintained divided government in Washington, the picture is starkly different in capitals from California to Florida: one party will hold the governor’s office and majorities in both legislative chambers in at least 37 states, the largest number in 60 years and a significant jump from even two years ago.

As for the some of the specifics:

Twenty-four states will be controlled by Republicans, including Alaska and Wisconsin, where the party took the State Senate, and North Carolina, where the governorship changed hands. At least 13 states will be Democratic, including Colorado, Minnesota and Oregon, where control of the legislatures shifted, and California, where the already dominant Democrats gained a supermajority in both chambers. (The situation in New York, where the potential for single-party control by the Democrats rests on the makeup of the Senate, is still uncertain.)

Power will be split in, at most, 12 capitals — the fewest, said Tim Storey of the National Conference of State Legislatures, since 1952.

Such a shift may beg the question, “why?” Some lawmakers cited “partisan influences at play in the once-a-decade redrawing of political districts before the election this year.” Meanwhile, others attributed it to “weariness and dissatisfaction among voters with the discord and gridlock of split control.”

The bottom line, as the report observes, is that while legislative processes will probably speed up, those proposals are unlikely to come from the middle.

Read the full report over at The New York Times.

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