Of the 15 fattest states of America, 12 voted Republican in the 2008 presidential election:
1 Mississippi: 32.5%
2 Alabama: 31.2%
3 West Virginia: 31.1%
4 Tennessee: 30.2%
5 South Carolina: 29.7%
6 Oklahoma: 29.5%
7 Kentucky: 29.0%
8 Louisiana: 28.9%
9 Michigan: 28.8%
10 -11 Arkansas and Ohio: 28.6%
12 North Carolina: 28.3%
13 Missouri: 28.1%
14 -15 Georgia and Texas: 27.9%
The 3 blue states were Ohio, North Carolina and Michigan.
It also works in reverse: if you take the 15 'leanest' states, only 3 or 4 voted Republican.
Interested in your thoughts on this.
Maybe republicans don't believe in healthy living along with saving the environment.
Sorry...not this republican. See my 15+ hubs on healthy eating/recipes and healthy exercise and ways to slow down global warming at home.
There are exceptions of course, but the question is why the epidemic among states. It makes sense that they would rebel against values democrats hold dear.
Its in the policking principle. They only care about their own damn stomach! Lol.
I'm going guess Republicans are more stressed out by "the way things are" than Democrats are? Stress leads to food cravings.
To go with that theory, or as a separate one, Democrats are often either very wealthy (as in Hollywood) or else on Welfare or in low-income jobs. The wealthy ones aren't stressed out when it comes to paying bills and coming up with what they need. The Welfare ones don't have any money to eat. The low-income ones don't either. A lot of Republicans are low-middle, middle-middle, and upper-middle income. They're the ones who end up taking home their jobs (as opposed to punching out and forgetting about them). In spite of all their efforts at doing the right thing and creating a decent home environment for their families, they're taxed to the point of feeling like low-income people. In other words, low-income people often have nothing but don't work as hard for it. Middle-income people work hard for their nothing.
Another part of the theory: Middle-income people may feel like they have nothing; but the difference between them and low-income people is that they usually have enough to eat. Yet another part of the theory, a lot of Republicans aim for traditional family lifestyles, which means kids, aiming to save for college, not a lot of time for going socializing (so a lot of staying home, renting movies, and maybe seeing pizza, Chinese food, fast food, and prepackaged foods.
Well, that's the only theory I can come up with. Not saying it's correct - just doing my best at guessing.
Americans are getting larger per year, but interesting that you have seen a correlation of parties.....
You might want to look at normal dietary intake to those parts of the country too...... South tends to eat more fried foods maybe???
I don't know guys, I hope no one is confusing 'correlation' with 'cause and effect'. I don't know that people in those states are fatter because they are Republicans.
Are they fat because they are Republicans or are they Republicans because they are fat?
I live in a small city, close to a big city. In the big city there are more police than in my small city. There is also more crime in that big city. Would this mean that more police leads to more crime?
aha, but take a look at the high school drop out rates of states like NY, IL, Michigan, Mass, etc who voted democrat.
I guess if you are implying that Repubs are fat, then the evidence speaks for what demos are.
Maybe look at jobless rates and the need to find work as opposed to school...... I know, not good, but a possibility and not related to party lines, especially at that age (highschool).
As of May 2009 this is the unemployment rate in brackets. The US unemployment rate is 9.4.
1 Mississippi: 32.5 (9.6)
2 Alabama: 31.2% (9.8)
3 West Virginia: 31.1% (8.6)
4 Tennessee: 30.2% (10.7)
5 South Carolina: 29.7% (12.1)
6 Oklahoma: 29.5% (6.3)
7 Kentucky: 29.0% (10.6)
8 Louisiana: 28.9% (6.6)
9 Michigan: 28.8% (14.1)
10 -11 Arkansas and Ohio: 28.6% (7.0, 10.8)
12 North Carolina: 28.3% (11.1)
13 Missouri: 28.1% (9.0)
14 -15 Georgia and Texas: 27.9% (9.7, 7.1)
This data is from April:
Just trying to keep things fair and balanced, guys.
A (non-obese) republican.
Yes, but the Slurpy machines will always need cleaning, etc. Jobs and quality jobs are 2 different things. I'm not debating this point, though...the whole country is effed right now in regards to the unemployment rate. Yet and still...blue collar southerners with less than average education still overwhelmingly vote republican. I just find it fascinating how the paradigm shifted, basically, since Reagan.
The way you are thinking is why the Democrats won't hold on to the majorities they now enjoy.
I'm not thinking about this any particular way other than the way it is... I am merely pointing out a truth.
Democrat used to = working class, blue collar backbone of the country people.
Republican used to = rich white guys.
Now, Democrat = elitist liberal and Republican = rural xenophobe.
(both examples being somewhat hyperbolic for the sake of illustrating my point).
The generalities and prejudices you are choosing to accept.
So you're saying that these "generalities" are not true?
By the way, I have no prejudices whatsoever... again, I am only pointing out that which is obvious to those paying any sort of attention during the last few major elections.
Statistics are easily manipulated, but facts are not.
Really? How many of those obese people in those states are registered voters? How many of them acutally voted in the last several elections? And how the heck are you determining the "fact" that they are xenophobic? Mind reading?
Facts indeed. How 'bout some logic?
Hold on, don't get it twisted. I am not comparing obesity to republicanism. I am simply pointing out the FACT that the red states mentioned in the beginning of this forum are indeed some of the worst economically and in SAT scores, college graduates, etc. I didn't make this up. And actually, there is a proven correlation between these factors and obesity. You can Google for yourself, I'm too tired.
And my assessment of the xenophobic tendencies is culled from my personal experience living in a red state (GA). Don't even get me started on the homophobia and other assorted nuggets of ignorance...
You must be tired, otherwise you'd recognize that unless you can tell me exactly who is voting in those states (for starters) your "facts" are proof of nothing.
So that is merely your subjective view and not supported in any meaningful way as relates to this topic.
Is it a perception in the States that Republicans = wealthy and Democrates = working class? Or is it the other way around. I'm interested in perception here as well.
Depends on who you ask and what empty generalism fits their preconcieved notions.
I'm not from the States so I can't speak for the average voting American, but I do know that here in Britain there is a huge body of voters who do not think about policies or individual politicians, they just vote whatever their parents and grandparents voted. Consequently if their grandparents, or even their great-grandparents voted Conservative because they admired Churchill's conduct during World War II, then that tradition will persist. It's about loyalty, not rational thinking.
In Australia that can happen with football teams!
What I was trying to prove with that data is that Republicans and Obesity and Democrats and Unemployment are basically inconclusive. Some red states have low obesity rates, some blue states have lower unemployment rates.
While it seems that many red states have high obese rates and many blue states have high unemployment rates, what can we prove by these sets of data? Not a whole lot. We'd have to spend a lot of time and a lot of money getting more conclusive data.
Anyone can twist and turn statistics to suit any issue. Unfortunately it's done a lot; by both sides.
There are so many factors and yes, I agree the whole country is 'effed' right now in regards to the unemployment rate as well as the obesity rate.
I brought in the stats of unemployment as it was mentioned in an earlier post. It didn't sway against Republicans and obesity at all. I should have pointed that out. So really unemployment could be ruled out. Perhaps it's education? (And pleased you don't have the obesity problem.)
Well the thread is really about obesity and the coincidence that the majority of states that came out as the most obese happened to be Republican. Are you saying Democrates are dropouts but are not fat? Not sure what you mean here.
Is there a connection between obesity and being a Republican. Very generalized statement but there must something not right with the union here.
And isn't it funny that those republican voting states are also some of the poorest, both economically and education-wise?
What ever happened to the "Dixie-Crats"? When did Voting republican become synonymous with being a poor, rural, xenophobic southerner?
That does seem to be a valid statement, and why is this the case. Do republican states not look after the welfare of their citizens through education and health?
One of the best explanations of why poor and rural areas turned Red can be found in Thomas Frank's "What's the Matter with Kansas," 2004. I'm sure it is a combination of factors taken into correlation with a few others.
Blue states tend to be more educated. Here's a breakdown of precenctage of population that is college educated. Education does correlate to lifestyle, including food consumption.
Percentage college graduates for each state appear below:
State Population 25+
(thousands) % bachelors degree
Alabama 2,948 22.7
Alaska 383 24.0
Arizona 3,441 26.0
Arkansas 1,743 17.4
California 21,990 29.8
Colorado 2,894 36.0
Connecticut 2,232 33.5
Delaware 531 28.1
District of Columbia 404 46.4
Florida 11,266 25.8
Georgia 5,468 25.0
Hawaii 796 27.0
Idaho 795 22.5
Illinois 8,031 28.1
Indiana 3,972 22.2
Iowa 1,891 24.6
Kansas 1,693 31.0
Kentucky 2,673 21.3
Louisiana 2,763 22.3
Maine 882 23.7
Maryland 3,545 37.2
Massachusetts 4,415 37.6
Michigan 6,330 23.3
Minnesota 3,323 32.7
Mississippi 1,742 19.3
Missouri 3,637 26.6
Montana 600 24.9
Nebraska 1,077 26.8
Nevada 1,356 21.2
New Hampshire 865 34.0
New Jersey 5,740 33.4
New Mexico 1,154 23.7
New York 12,636 29.6
North Carolina 5,409 23.8
North Dakota 420 25.2
Ohio 7,304 25.0
Oklahoma 2,214 24.3
Oregon 2,315 26.4
Pennsylvania 8,277 24.8
Rhode Island 713 27.6
South Carolina 2,591 22.3
South Dakota 465 23.9
Tennessee 3,700 23.5
Texas 13,231 24.7
Utah 1,272 28.4
Vermont 423 31.3
Virginia 4,623 34.2
Washington 3,884 28.8
West Virginia 1,222 15.3
Wisconsin 3,585 24.1
Wyoming 321 20.7
Source: Annual Social and Economic Supplement to the 2003 Current Population Survey
Other rankings and top 10 lists
Concerning the defection of the working class/poor (which has been pointed out here as basically the 'fat') to the Republican party, Frank suggests that the political discourse of recent decades has dramatically shifted to one in which "explosive" cultural issues, such as abortion and gay marriage, are being used to redirect anger towards "liberal elites."
In the book, he describes the rise of neoconservatism and the so-called far right in the social and political landscape of Kansas (representative of the poor/rural he is talking about across America...he is from Kansas). He finds extraordinary irony in working-class Kansans' overwhelming support for Republican politicians, despite belief that the economic policies of the Republican party are wreaking havoc on their communities and livelihoods for the benefit of the extremely wealthy. Meanwhile, he says, the party fails to deliver on the "moral" social issues (such as abortion and gay rights that they buy into) which brought their support in the first place -- deepening a cycle of frustration and confusion--all which is then cycled back to blaming liberalism.
And those same issues aren't 'used' by the left to "redirect anger" in the other direction? I thought you'd said you'd been to college. Own a TV? Go to the movies?
You are 'arguing' (such as you do) with ideas largely taken from a book by a columnist for the Wall Street Journal who has a PHd in History from the University of Chicago.
The book is available at your local library. Why don't you go for a visit?
What?! "a columnist for the Wall Street Journal who has a PHd in History from the University of Chicago"?! What was I thinking? Such a person couldn't possibly have a political bias! How dare I question such a sage?
And those same issues aren't 'used' by the left to "redirect anger" in the other direction? I thought you'd said you'd been to college. Own a TV? Go to the movies?
You turned it personal (as usual), stating that I didn't go to college or have seen TV, etc. Hence, the logical answer to your pathetic tactic was to deflect it.
Go away, TK. You really are out of your league, you know.
edit*..Btw, do you know who Karl Rove is?
I didn't 'state' that. In fact, I noted that you had claimed such experiences and therefore I would have expected you to be familiar with them. Reading skills are fundamental, you know.
Often people write with a bias however, doesn't stop a viewpoint from being published. These states have a high level of obesity and something is causing it. So there is an underlying issue here. This writer sees a discord going on and perhaps he's onto something.
Voters are usually swayed by emotion, would you agree tk? Candidates certainly like stirring it. No doubt people are p*ssed off. Why are these states eating so much?
That reminds me of the gubernatorial race in GA. a few years back wherein Georgians elected their first republican governor since The Reconstruction (Sonny Purdue). The big wedge issue was the state flag... the ol' "stars and bars" of the Confederacy or something new and less offensive to certain groups.
The state legislature had already made the decision to go with a new flag and the "southern heritage" crowd was losing their minds...Purdue ran on a platform of "let Georgians vote on it"...and he got elected for, essentially, that reason.
Guess what happened the minute he got in office... That's right, he said "eff that, we ain't voting" (or words to that effect).
Meanwhile screw education, unemployment, taxation, civil rights for everyone and all those other issues that are way less important than keeping the confederate battle flag flying over a state that is more than 58% African-American.
My last name is Lithuanian so what do I care (other than having to live here)? ...I couldn't help but laugh.
Did anyone say those exact words? If any other issue on the left or right is raised that falls outside those specific areas does that mean anyone addressing said issue is basically saying "screw education, unemployment, taxation, civil rights"?
Is what moral? And, you didn't answer my questions.
No to my knowledge, no one had the courage to say those exact words, however the fact that we elected the first republican governor since the reconstruction speaks to SOMETHING. And the flag issue was super hot. It was all Candidate Purdue talked about.
You should have seen all the "No votes for turncoats" bumper stickers when he went up for re-election. Too late and too bad for the sons of the confederacy...the repub's have their toe hold here now.
Ah, they 'didn't have the courage' but YOU know what they were REALLY thinking and feeling, right? More mind reading?
And of course if someone were to raise an issue about, say, public health or traffic safety they would REALLY be saying "screw education, unemployment, taxation, civil rights"? You've set up a rather narrow band of acceptable topics for state government.
No, just more living in the state, observing my environment, watching the news, reading the paper (both news items, editorials and letters to the editor), talking to my associates, friends and neighbors, paying attention and using basic critical thinking to arrive at reasonable hypotheses.
What criteria do you use to evaluate your reality?
I've g2g to bed (omg it's so late now lol), but if so many people were discontent with Republicans in GA, how come there was such a HUGE turnout for the last run-off election for Saxby? It was only so close on November 4th because of Obama's GOTV efforts (incredible, might I add). But, in December, the Obama camp wasn't around and the democrats didn't get out to vote for Saxby's opponent, thus not getting rid of a GOP Senator when they had a chance.
I think it's because his name is "Saxby" (just kidding..see SNL skit about funny names starring Tim McGraw).
Seriously, you are right. GA is a red state through and through. But I remember the moment it truly started and it was with the flag debate and the election of the first GOP governor in 150+ years.
Gotta love the name Saxby!!! lol I was down there in December for the race. Was a little disappointed as when I got the call I was thinking "yes! warm weather!" Not so! Anyways, I had a great time in your state and would love to get down to Savannah one day (the travel mag I read on the airplane ride down made it look incredible). Everyone that I encountered was so polite and awesome. Really enjoyed my two weeks there. I wish I would've had time for shopping in the Atlanta/Buckhead area- great stores.
Many of the same, but I try to recognize my OPINIONS for what they are.
Sorry, I didn't think you asked me a question. And I should have said morale.
I'm really at the mercy of the US citizens here. I asked the question to learn. Am not judging or taking sides here. I thought it was an interesting statistic and would be good to be addressed. I wonder if the governors of those states are seeing this as an issue. Is it an issue of the Governor of the state? Who helps the people change the pandemic (obesity could be put in that category in my opinion.)
I'm hoping to learn something from the discussion.
Must have taken that little number right out of Karl Rove's play book. And I don't think there is really a question that these kind of tactics have dominated the Republican party since at least the late 80's. That isn't hypocritical or false, either, just because it isn't giving 'equal play' to the other side...just an evaluation of the trends. Which is why the Repubs are in the position they are in right now.
While I cannot give you any solid information, I can also tell you unfortunately that the faith-based community also suffers from battle with the bulge.
I think, on behalf of the church folks, it has to do with "religion" rather than "relationship" being the focus of churches, and as a result, people feel pressure they aren't "Christian" enough and as a result, turn to the comfort foods.
Yeah, and every other community in a country where lifestyles have become more sedentary and many have poor dietary habits. It's not a political or religious thing (I can't believe this needs to be said).
So it's just plain coincidence that the large majority of these states are Republican?
Do you have a breakdown of the obese in each state according to declared political affiliation?
That's interesting. Are these States synonomous with the Bible belt Brandon? So what you say here equals low self esteem - not stacking up.
TK, what's the deal? Don't treat people like they are stupid; you don't even know me.
Like a human being. But, I guess that's too much to ask.
Government at the state level of Mississippi has been overwhelmingly Democrat for over 100 years. I believe the governor has been a Democrat since about 1850, until a Republican was elected in 2000 and again in 2008.
You also need to look at the number of eligible voters compared to the number who turned out for the election. I suggest the voters represent a minority of the total number of over-18 citizens that live in the state.
I think a lot of Republicans view that obesity is like throwing on a Star of David patch.
The other things many I've spoken to fear is what role it would play on nationalized health care..
..would you want to pay money to someone who in all likelihood could see a dramatic health difference if they ate less?
These aren't my thoughts, but they are incites to republican friends of mine.
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