Charles Ballard

MSU News, Sep 21 2012

President Barack Obama holds a substantial lead in Michigan over Republican challenger Mitt Romney, although many of the state’s voters remain undecided, according to Michigan State University’s latest State of the State Survey.

In the quarterly survey, completed in August, the Democratic incumbent leads Romney 39 percent to 30 percent among likely voters, for a margin of 9 percentage points. The results come on the heels of an EPIC-MRA poll for the Detroit Free Press and a Detroit News/WDIV Local 4 survey that both show Obama with a commanding lead.

MSU News, Feb 14 2011

Michigan’s economic outlook brightened as the state elected new leaders and celebrated the conclusion of one decade and the approach of another, Michigan State University’s year-ending State of the State Survey reveals.

Despite the renewing confidence, those who answered the telephone survey continued to express their disappointment in Michigan’s outgoing governor and President Barack Obama.

MSU News, Oct 27 2010

Despite Michigan’s continued economic malaise, residents’ optimism about the future is at its highest in nearly five years, according to Michigan State University’s latest State of the State Survey.

According to the summer 2010 survey, 54.8 percent of Michiganians believe they will be better off financially one year from now. That’s up from 50.1 percent in the previous survey and the highest mark since fall 2004, when it was 60.1 percent.

MSU News, Jun 28 2010

Michigan State University’s latest State of the State Survey presents a distinct paradox: Michigan’s residents are increasingly optimistic about the economy but seem to be losing faith in their political leaders.

President Barack Obama scored the lowest job-approval marks of his tenure, with only 36.9 percent of Michigan residents rating his performance as “good” or “excellent.” Gov. Jennifer Granholm’s positive ratings were even lower, at 20.8 percent, her worst since 2007. And trust in state government overall was at an all-time low in the quarterly survey.

Research by Charles Ballard, professor of economics, and Paul Menchik, professor of economics, used data from the Current Population Survey to assess the changes in the income distribution from 1976 to 2006, for the United States as a whole and for many of the 50 states. For the entire country, this has been a period of increasing income inequality. The vast majority of the states have also experienced increasing income inequality. However, there are considerable differences among the 50 states in the ways in which the income distribution has evolved over this period.