Sign Of The Times: Washington DC Leads The Nation In Personal Income Growth For Past Decade


Yesterday I wrote that (thanks to fracking-induced energy boom) North Dakota led the states in personal income growth from 2000 – 2011, but Mark Perry points out something I missed in those numbers.

North Dakota may have led the states, but Washington DC led the nation:

North Dakota’s growth in personal income per capita of 78.75% between 2000 and 2011 was the highest for any U.S. state, but was just behind the 80.6% growth in per-capita income in Washington, D.C. What’s the lesson here? Maybe that even an abundance of natural resources and oil prosperity in North Dakota can’t generate increases in personal income like the federal government in D.C.?

From 2000 – 2011 we went from a spend-happy, big-government Republican administration and Congress (though, to be fair, Democrats held Congress starting in 2007) to an even more spend-happy, big-government Democrat administration and Congress.

Not even an oil boom can keep up with the explosive growth in federal government under both Republicans and Democrats.

The rest of the economy is stagnating, but the business of big government is thriving. And to be clear, we’re not just talking about pay for government employees here, but pay for all the people who go to Washington to massage special deals out of an ever-bigger government.

Rob Port

Rob Port is the editor of In 2011 he was a finalist for the Watch Dog of the Year from the Sam Adams Alliance and winner of the Americans For Prosperity Award for Online Excellence. In 2013 the Washington Post named SAB one of the nation's top state-based political blogs, and named Rob one of the state's best political reporters.

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