Map of the Day: Kansas Is Not Quite the Slowest Growth State in the Nation

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Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback slashed taxes when he took office five years ago, and since then the state’s economy has, for lack of a better word, sucked. The state legislature, which eagerly supported Brownback at first, has finally gotten tired of the obvious problems the tax cuts have produced, and tried this month to raise more revenue. It almost worked, but Brownback vetoed the bill and the state senate fell just short of overturning it. So the tax cuts stay in place for now, and the Kansas budget remains enormously in the hole.

Allow me to illustrate how this has worked out using my new favorite toy, GeoFRED. Here is employment growth over the past year:

Woot! Kansas isn’t in last place. It’s fourth from last. Here’s growth of gross state product in 2015 (the most recent year available):

Better! Kansas is 8th from last (counting Alaska, not shown). When the 2016 figures are available, maybe Kansas will move up to ninth or tenth from last.

There you have it. A picture is worth a thousand words, so that’s 2,000 words I’ve just saved you. You’re welcome.

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We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

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