Last week I argued that Texas really has had a pretty impressive economic performance under Rick Perry, but there's just no evidence that his story of why that happened is true:
Perry's right-wing policy cocktail closely resembles conservative governance in other Republican-run states. And yet we don't see a general trend of extraordinary job growth in states with low taxes, pro-business regulation, and so on.
Ross Douthat's column today makes essentially the same argument:
When Perry became governor, taxes were already low, regulations were light, and test scores were on their way up. He didn’t create the zoning rules that keep Texas real estate affordable, or the strict lending requirements that minimized the state’s housing bubble. Over all, the Texas model looks like something he inherited rather than a system he built.
Meanwhile, Dylan Matthews brings the data to bolster the point I made -- that other low-tax states have not enjoyed particularly high growth:
This looks like a pretty solid consensus to me.