"F" grade for WA governor on fiscal restraint in new survey

Jay Inslee podium per carbon tax plan.jpg
With Washington's state budget up over 17% in the last year, a new survey by The Cato Institute rates WA Gov. Jay Inslee as the worst among America's 50 governors when it comes to fiscal restraint. (photo: KOMO News)

Washington, D.C. – Washington Governor Jay Inslee received an "F" grade and was rated the worst governor in the U.S. for fiscal restraint in a new survey released today by the Cato Institute.

The biennial Fiscal Policy Report Card on America's Governors, produced by Chris Edwards, director of tax policy studies and editor of, uses statistical data to grade governors on their taxing and spending records from a limited-government perspective. Edwards says Gov. Inslee was the lowest rated of the 50 U.S. governors in this year's survey.

According to The Cato Institute, the report card looks at data since 2016 for each state and awards an objective grade based on spending variables, a revenue variable, and tax rate variables. Governors who have cut taxes and spending the most receive the highest grades, while those who have increased taxes and spending the most receive the lowest grades.

Five governors received the highest grade of "A": Susana Martinez of New Mexico, Henry McMaster of South Carolina, Doug Burgum of North Dakota, Paul LePage of Maine, and Greg Abbott of Texas.

Seven additional governors received the lowest grade of “F”: Roy Cooper of North Carolina, John Bel Edwards of Louisiana, Tom Wolf of Pennsylvania, Jim Justice of West Virginia, David Ige of Hawaii, Dennis Daugaard of South Dakota, and Kate Brown of Oregon.

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