California is in 3-way tie for second worst of the 50 states in highest unemployment ranking in the United States, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. California is tied with New Mexico and New York with 7.6% unemployment. California’s Governor Gavin Newsom was the first governor to order the state to lockdown all schools and “non-essential” businesses, causing mass unemployment.
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Only Nevada’s unemployment, at 7.7%, is higher – just barely.
The Foundation for Economic Freedom notes that as the economy continues to recover from the COVID-19 ongoing government restrictions, “newly released Labor Department data show that the recovery isn’t equal across all 50 states and Washington, DC.”
“Some parts of the US have almost or entirely returned to pre-pandemic unemployment rates—while others remain strangled in stagnation.”
They found that the states struggling with the highest unemployment all have Democratic governors and Mayor in Washington D.C. As the Globe has reported throughout the 18-months of lockdowns, California and other blue states had much longer and severe Governor-ordered, state-mandated restrictions on their economies than the top 10 states.
“And, except for Arizona, all of these bottom-ranking states continued to offer residents expanded payouts to stay on unemployment benefits,” FEE reported.
FEE reported the 10 states with the lowest unemployment rates as of July 2021:
- Nebraska: 2.3 percent
- Utah: 2.6 percent
- New Hampshire: 2.9 percent
- South Dakota: 2.9 percent
- Idaho: 3.0 percent
- Vermont: 3.0 percent
- Alabama: 3.2 percent
- Oklahoma: 3.5 percent
- Montana: 3.6 percent
- Georgia: 3.7 percent
FEE reported the stark contrast: Here are the 10 worst states (counting Washington, DC) with the highest unemployment rates.
- Arizona: 6.6 percent
- Louisiana*: 6.6 percent
- Pennsylvania: 6.6 percent
- Washington, DC: 6.7 percent
- Illinois: 7.1 percent
- Hawaii: 7.3 percent
- New Jersey: 7.3 percent
- California: 7.6 percent
- New Mexico: 7.6 percent
- New York: 7.6 percent
- Nevada: 7.7 percent
“With the exception of Arizona, these states struggling with high unemployment all have Democratic governors (or mayor, in the case of DC),” Fee reported. “Generally speaking, they had longer and harsher government restrictions on their economies than the top 10 states. And, except for Arizona, all of these bottom-ranking states continued to offer residents expanded payouts to stay on unemployment benefits. (*Louisiana ended the benefits on August 3, but the unemployment rates are for July 2021, before this change took effect).”
Concerned with too little focus on the costs of lockdowns, in November 2020, the nonpartisan American Institute for Economic Research issued a warning as they reported on the cost of stringencies in the United States, including stay-at-home orders, closings of business and schools, restrictions on gatherings, shutting of arts and sports, restrictions on medical services, and interventions in the freedom of movement:
- Unemployment rate increased to 14.7% in April 2020. This is the highest rate of increase (10.3%) and largest month over month increase in history of available data (since 1948).
- In March, 39% of people living with a household income of $40,000 and below reported a job loss.
- The unemployment rate between February and April increased by 12% for women and 10% for men.
- Mothers of children aged 12 and younger lost 2.2 million jobs between February and August (12% drop), while fathers of small children lost 870,000 jobs (4% drop).
- One out of four women who were surveyed reported their job loss was due to lack of childcare, twice the rate of men surveyed.
The Foundation for Economic Freedom concluded: “States that harshly restricted their economies and continue to offer expanded welfare programs are trapped in a labor market coma. Meanwhile, free states that eschewed long-term lockdowns and welfare excess are leading the recovery. That’s no coincidence—and the principle here is worth remembering long after the pandemic.”
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