Is California a Good Role Model?
By Thomas B. Edsall
Conservatives argue that California’s liberal politics have failed. They point out that by one key measure the state now has the highest poverty rate in the nation and they argue that its liberal minimum wage and restrictive housing codes have more than a hundred thousand people homeless, more than a million unemployed and millions more stuck on the bottom rungs of the socioeconomic ladder . . .
Kerry Jackson, a fellow at the Pacific Research Institute, a conservative think tank based in California, summed up the thrust of his winter 2018 City Journal essay in its title, “California, Poverty Capital: Why are so many people poor in the Golden State?”
California state and local governments spent nearly $958 billion from 1992 through 2015 on public welfare programs, including cash-assistance payments, vendor payments, and ‘other public welfare,’ according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Unfortunately, California, with 12 percent of the American population, is home today to roughly one in three of the nation’s welfare recipients.