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Topic: What Makes Vermont + Maine So Liberal?< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 07 2012, 3:38 pm  Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

The typical county-by-county map shows the primary R/D divide is a rural/urban divide. But there are outliers that have always stumped me... namely Vermont and Maine;  the tri-state area of Iowa, Illinois, and Wisconsin; and the northern counties of NH, NY, and MN.

And what's up with NH lately? The more conservative portion of the state is now the southern part, where the Boston transplants/commuters have moved. What happened to the Yankee Republicans in that state?

I'd love to hear your theories.


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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 07 2012, 3:49 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Irene.  Taught lots of people the need for community in times of crisis.
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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 07 2012, 3:55 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

But this trend existed pre-Irene. Maybe Hazel?

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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 07 2012, 4:00 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I lived in New England for 12 years and all I can say is that most Republicans up there are far more moderate than the national average. Yes, MA gave us Mitt Romney, but first it produced Republicans like Bill Weld.

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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 07 2012, 4:01 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

That's where the fewest religious people reside.
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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 07 2012, 4:06 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Vermont and Maine have very high levels of educational attainment.  Vermont is one of the highest ranked in the nation.
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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 07 2012, 4:40 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 07 2012, 4:48 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

What makes Vermont and Maine so Liberal?

Informed and enlightened people.
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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 07 2012, 5:00 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Right on.  Good brain power and the energy to use those brains in both a rational and practical way.

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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 07 2012, 5:00 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I don't have the answer, but I've always thought about that question in the opposite way.  I always found it odd that NH, wasn't a solidly blue state.  Despite the usual rural/urban voter preferences, I always thought that New England was on the whole, pretty liberal (in regards to total population).

Compared to most rural areas in this country, NH/VT/ME are not nearly as entrenched in their religious beliefs (i.e. letting them dominate their political views).  So, I think that has a little to do with it.

Other than that, us Massholes just refer to VT/NH/ME as Massachusetts' hat, so they tend to follow our lead (kidding...)


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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 07 2012, 5:18 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I would suspect it truly is because of the academic intellectualism that is represented there. There is also a strong respect and appreciation for the environment.
Some of the finest Liberal Arts colleges in the Nation are within those states. In Maine, Bowdoin,Colby,Bates etc.
In Vermont, Middlebury, UVM etc.
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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 08 2012, 9:18 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I've lived in Maine and the northern counties of NY. Outside of the colleges, I can't say I saw a lot of academic intellectualism there.

On the other hand, I think the religion theory is a good one. I've always thought of NH being more libertarian than conservative, so the religion theory would still apply. But that doesn't  explain why NH was so "Republican" in years past, and why they aren't nearly as Republican now.


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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 08 2012, 9:35 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(WalksWithBlackflies @ Nov. 08 2012, 9:18 am)
QUOTE
On the other hand, I think the religion theory is a good one. I've always thought of NH being more libertarian than conservative, so the religion theory would still apply. But that doesn't  explain why NH was so "Republican" in years past, and why they aren't nearly as Republican now.

I actually think it makes perfect sense.  Romney was a social conservative, that rubs wrong to the libertarian wing.

I actually think a trend towards live and let live libertarianism are the answers here.  Maine, VT and NH aren't all that different.  VT is considered very liberal, but have some of the loosest gun laws in America.  That's not a stance you find in other liberal bastions.  I think in all three of those states, people are content to live their lives and allow others to do the same.  VT and to a lesser extent ME are more "community" oriented, with NH in my experience being a bit more inclined to want to be left alone.

It should be noted that NH and ME are one and two on places where I want to retire.


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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 08 2012, 12:02 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(WalksWithBlackflies @ Nov. 08 2012, 9:18 am)
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I've lived in Maine and the northern counties of NY. Outside of the colleges, I can't say I saw a lot of academic intellectualism there.

On the other hand, I think the religion theory is a good one. I've always thought of NH being more libertarian than conservative, so the religion theory would still apply. But that doesn't  explain why NH was so "Republican" in years past, and why they aren't nearly as Republican now.

The state even runs the liquors stores in NH. Not sure how that could be considered libertarian.
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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 08 2012, 12:35 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

It's funny how different ideologies get so mixed up in implementation. That is perhaps the best argument for states rights. I fall back on concepts like biodiversity, and there is no reason to believe that doesn't have a lot of value in society.

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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 08 2012, 12:48 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(HighGravity @ Nov. 08 2012, 12:02 pm)
QUOTE

(WalksWithBlackflies @ Nov. 08 2012, 9:18 am)
QUOTE
I've lived in Maine and the northern counties of NY. Outside of the colleges, I can't say I saw a lot of academic intellectualism there.

On the other hand, I think the religion theory is a good one. I've always thought of NH being more libertarian than conservative, so the religion theory would still apply. But that doesn't  explain why NH was so "Republican" in years past, and why they aren't nearly as Republican now.

The state even runs the liquors stores in NH. Not sure how that could be considered libertarian.

Holy crap... you found one example of a non-libertarian institution in NH! It must be a communist hotbed!

Kidding aside:

http://wac.0873.edgecastcdn.net/800873....ph1.bmp

Sorens points out, “Idaho, Utah, Wyoming, Nebraska, Oklahoma, and Alaska are the most conservative states, while Vermont, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Hawaii, Connecticut, and New York are the most liberal states. The states with the most libertarians are Montana, Alaska, New Hampshire, and Idaho...

http://www.cato-at-liberty.org/where-are-the-libertarians/

Also, from George Mason University...Freedom in the 50 States: An Index of Personal and Economic Freedom -

By summing the economic freedom and personal
freedom scores, we obtain the overall freedom
index, presented in Table V. New Hampshire comes
out on top as the freest state in the United States.
It achieved this ranking due to its excellent fiscal
policies and moderate levels of regulation and
paternalism


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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 08 2012, 1:10 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I don't really see Maine being all that liberal

I mean they have a governor,Paul LePage, who is not only a Republican
but very right-wing. Then again he was elected in 2010 in that tea party
tide because of the low voter turnout so maybe that's not a good way to gauge
how far right or left Maine is

There are Maine's two senators who are Republican(soon to be just one Republican
with what appears to be left leaning independent) too.

On the other hand they have been voting for Democratic presidents for a while now.

Their representatives seem to be Democratic though too

Don't know who they elect at the state level but at the federal level it seems to
balance out down the middle


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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 08 2012, 2:02 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

DTM -

What I was trying to relate was the relative liberalism compared to the rural nature of the referenced states. Tennessee and Maine are both relatively rural, but their politics differ considerably.


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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 08 2012, 2:02 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

All - Here's the 2012 county map for the presidential election:



What's with the blue streak through MS, AL, GA, and SC?

I also notice that even a few border counties in MT are blue, yet the UP is almost entirely red.


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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 08 2012, 2:18 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(WalksWithBlackflies @ Nov. 08 2012, 2:02 pm)
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What's with the blue streak through MS, AL, GA, and SC?

I just answered my own question:



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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 08 2012, 2:32 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Obviously this is just speculation, but as a person who lives in Vermont, these are my observations:

I think that it has a bit to do with scale and the way that the state was populated and developed. We're a rural state, but our communities are focused around small, central villages and town centers. We still have annual town meetings, where everybody in each town gets together with their neighbors to discuss the issues of the day. I think that kind of things leads to more civility and a less "less vs them."

I've heard from out-of-state political operatives that they're always surprised by how friendly most of the campaigns and volunteers are with each other. When we stand out at the polls all day or hold signs, there isn't a level of hostility that might be found in other places.

Finally, there are pockets of deeply conservative people/families in the state, but they seem largely to care about their communities and their neighbors. They realize that money needs to be spent sometimes to fix the roads or bridges or whatever.

And, we don't have big debates over issues like gun control, because nobody here really wants gun control. So, both the liberals and conservatives are on the same page on quite a few issues. At this point, same-sex marriage is a closed issue too.

Add an influx of well-off and educated people from southern New England, general tolerance for differences, and a lack of big, out-of-state money; and you get this relatively liberal mixture. I love it here in VT!
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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 08 2012, 3:04 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

vino, you make VT sound like a wonderful place to be.

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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 08 2012, 4:39 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(WalksWithBlackflies @ Nov. 08 2012, 12:48 pm)
QUOTE

(HighGravity @ Nov. 08 2012, 12:02 pm)
QUOTE

(WalksWithBlackflies @ Nov. 08 2012, 9:18 am)
QUOTE
I've lived in Maine and the northern counties of NY. Outside of the colleges, I can't say I saw a lot of academic intellectualism there.

On the other hand, I think the religion theory is a good one. I've always thought of NH being more libertarian than conservative, so the religion theory would still apply. But that doesn't  explain why NH was so "Republican" in years past, and why they aren't nearly as Republican now.

The state even runs the liquors stores in NH. Not sure how that could be considered libertarian.

Holy crap... you found one example of a non-libertarian institution in NH! It must be a communist hotbed!

Yeah just one, that equates the totality of liquor sales in the state. But yeah, you got me, I only mentioned the one. Must be a libertarian mecca.
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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 08 2012, 5:44 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

What some people call "liberal" today was quite moderate not that long ago before the Republican's were hijacked by the lunatic fringe.

Vermont's not much more than quiche eating New Yorkers and Maine and New Hampshire are full of "Massholes."


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(double cabin @ Nov. 08 2012, 5:44 pm)
QUOTE
What some people call "liberal" today was quite moderate not that long ago before the Republican's were hijacked by the lunatic fringe.

Vermont's not much more than quiche eating New Yorkers and Maine and New Hampshire are full of "Massholes."

Not quite true, and not far off the truth.  Maine is not that lib.  Vermont is way out. Subaru driving, Obama loving, birkenstock wearing, tree huggin, maple syrup growin, lgbt, recycling freaks.  Peace love dope man!

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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 08 2012, 7:31 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I think the answer goes back a ways on the east coast--back to early settlemet.  People inherit their values and political leanings and vote as a traditional practice in many instances. Southern Culture and Northern Culture are still very different in their attitudes toward community and religion/morality.

The Mason Dixon line is still where the division begins.  PA is still where the line is blurred.

EDIT: Refer to Vino's post for an example of how Northern Culture plays in to political leanings.


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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 10 2012, 6:12 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(WalksWithBlackflies @ Nov. 08 2012, 2:02 pm)
QUOTE
All - Here's the 2012 county map for the presidential election:



What's with the blue streak through MS, AL, GA, and SC?

I also notice that even a few border counties in MT are blue, yet the UP is almost entirely red.

Check out the Wyoming map.  The only blue area is Jackson, where the middle class and working types can't even think about affording a home.  If that's progressive then I don't need it.

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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 10 2012, 8:04 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

The guy who thought Romney would win by 3 points and consistently makes some of the most
inane comments is pontificating again this time on how Red states supposedly have superior
economies than Blue states by focusing on one very sparselypopulated red state(Wyoming)
with good resources that wasn't affected by the financial crisis.  Name any red state that
has anything comparable to Silicon Valley?

Beyond that I found two links from The Atlantic and one ranked them by how well they
perform economically

http://www.theatlantic.com/busines....#slide1

It does rank Wyoming the best economy but Kentucky(a red state) as the worst

Now the Atlantic also has the following link that categorizes each state as either above
average in conservatism, average or below average.

http://www.theatlantic.com/politic....27

Now using that map as a guide in gauging what states are conservative and which are blue
states(ignored states that were considered average in their ideological position), I summed
up all the red states(so Wyoming would be represented by 1 and Kentucky 50) and then divided
by the # of red states which resulted in 533/20 = 26.65. So the average red state would be
in the 26.65 position or 27 if we round up.

I did the same thing with blue states and got 305/14 or 21.79. So the average blue state
would in the 21.79 position or rounded up the 22 position.

Now just to give some extra leeway in the red direction, I did another count not counting
maine as liberal(since I thought Maine was more middle of the road) but when you do that
you get 288/13 or 22.15 or rounded down 22(still better than the red states)

So it looks like you're wrong as usual justwalkin. Blue states do perform better economically
but remember that is even under the condition that the Blue states were more impacted by
the recession so without a doubt Blue states perform better economically.


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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 10 2012, 9:42 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic.  Ignore posts   QUOTE

The Northeast has traditionally been a rather independently minded area and as vinovampire pointed out, more concerned with their neighbors than what the rest of the country thinks should be done. The term "Yankee ingenuity" refers to the resilience of the people of that area and it is a mind set that I feel still lives on in their attitude of doing the right thing, not what is the popular thing of the day.
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