TCS Daily


Why the Red States are Red

By Jerry Bowyer - November 1, 2004 12:00 AM

Conservative Columnist: You know, Peter, it's mostly Republicans who are dying in Iraq...

Peter Jennings: How do you know that... how do you know that?

Jerry Bowyer: They're mostly red-staters. I know that because we counted them.

(Town Hall Meeting Panel Discussion with Peter Jennings -- 10/21/2004)

The old saw that Americans are only willing to support wars to the degree that they are distant from the cost of those wars is clearly rebutted by today's evidence. As the chart above demonstrates, the people who are most directly affected by his decisions are the people most supportive of George W. Bush.

Furthermore, since these states tend to be marked by high military participation rates, they are most likely to pay their share for the final victory in Iraq.

  • 574 of the total US casualties are from Red States.
  • 53% of the total US casualties are from Red States.
  • 510 of the total US casualties are from Blue States.
  • 47% of the total US casualties are from Blue States.
  • 4.1 per million of the total population of the Red States died in Iraq.
  • 3.6 per million of the total population of the Blue States died in Iraq.
  • This means that if you're from of a Red State, you're 12% more likely to die in Iraq than if you're from a blue state.

This analysis puts the final nail into the coffin of the "chicken hawk" theory. We know (from a previous column) that this administration has a higher proportion of veterans than the prior one. We also know (from the graph embedded in this text) that senators who approved Iraq War II are more likely to be veterans than those who did not. Finally, we know that the ultimate sovereigns over the president, the ones who choose him (the states), are more likely to support him the closer they are to the military action.

The Red States might be hawks, but they sure aren't chickens.

Jerry Bowyer writes the ChartWell column for TCS.


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