Kevin Price
Texas type of government contributes to its prosperity
By Kevin Price
March 9, 2011

People have asked me often why Texas is different than the rest of the country. During this great recession, the Lone Star state has produced more jobs than all other states combined and has long been a magnet to corporations and people looking for opportunity. There must be reasons why Texas is singled out as a place that is good for business and those reasons are found on several different levels.

  • Sound economic policies. Texas is one of a few states that have avoided the temptation of an income tax. Income tax is a war on wealth creation and should always be avoided. The ability of Texas to avoid this has added to its wealth and reputation. Furthermore it is far more reasonable in its regulations than other states, which is beneficial for both consumers and business.

  • The character of Texans. Texans have a very unique character. As a nation of its own that joined the US, Texans believe that independence is an important virtue that should not be underestimated. Texans tend to seek private solutions to social problems and the government tends to be the last resort, rather than the first priority.

    The reason behind the inclinations of Texas towards limited government is because of those characteristics that make the state unique, politically:

  • Texas has a plural executive branch. The governor of Texas is one of the weakest in the country, with virtually every executive function held in an office directly elected by the people Every office except for the Secretary of State is elected by the people, including the Railroad Commissioner, Lieutenant Governor, Comptroller, Land Commissioner, and others. This creates many more independent voices involved in the policy process. That means that things are less likely to change and when they do change, it is slow. This obviously makes a friendly environment for business, that is always concerned about a changing economic environment.

  • The legislature only meets once every two years, which is unheard of for a state of this size. However, because they meet so rarely, the government (again) does less, again benefiting the economic situation because government is not "even around" to add new taxes, spending, and laws.

    Texas has a convoluted governing system, made up of part time legislators, and (arguably) too many chefs in the executive branch leading the policy process. It is one of the "least efficient" state governments in the country in terms of effectiveness, ironically producing one of the best economies in the nation. Thomas Jefferson was right, "That government is best which governs least." If you are looking for proof, check out the great state of Texas. The rest of the country could learn from a political system that is so resistant to change.

© Kevin Price


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Kevin Price

Kevin Price is Publisher and Editor in Chief of

His background is eclectic and includes years of experience in both business and public policy, as well as two decades of experience in broadcast journalism. He was an aide to U.S. Senator Gordon Humphrey (R-NH) and later went on to work in policy areas with some of the nation's leading think tanks including the National Center for Public Policy Research and was part of the Heritage Foundation's Annual Guide to Public Policy Experts... (more)


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