Governors Discuss Tax Reform, Opioids, and Education in 2018 Addresses

Over the past three months, governors across the country have taken to the podium to highlight their state's accomplishments and outline policy priorities as part of their 2018 State of State Address. Starting with Governor Andrew Cuomo (D-NY) on January 3rd and ending with Governor Mark Dayton (D-MN) on March 14th, we analyzed all 46 speeches delivered this year and identified key policy areas mentioned, or not mentioned, by each governor.

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Following the passage of tax reform in Congress, 23 of 31 Republican governors mentioned tax cuts or reform in their address.

More than two-thirds of Republican governors, or 23 of 31, touted the success of the recently passed tax reform legislation in Congress or discussed the need for additional tax reform during their address. In addition to the 23 Republican governors, seven of the 14 Democratic governors also discussed tax cuts or reform.

Ten Democrats and 22 Republicans mentioned the opioid crisis in their address.

With the opioid crisis continuing to plague communities across the country, governors in 33 states mentioned the epidemic and the impact it's having on their states. A handful of governors used their address as an opportunity to discuss the work of the opioid task-forces created over the past two years.

98 percent of governors mentioned K-12 education and only 11 percent mentioned cybersecurity.

Considering there are twice as many Republican governors as Democrats, we also identified the percent of governors within each party who mentioned each policy area. For instance, 71 percent of Democratic governors mentioned climate change compared to only 10 percent of Republican governors. And, only half of Democratic governors discussed tax reform compared to 74 percent of Republican governors.

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