A new study has ranked all 50 states based on how they handled the coronavirus pandemic and found that Florida was one of the best states in the country, while New Jersey was the worst. The Committee To Unleash Prosperity graded each state using a variety of metrics, including the economy, education, and death rates from the virus.
The study found that while Florida was among the top states in the nation, other states, which enacted strict coronavirus prevention measures, such as California and New York, were worse off. The states that enacted lengthy shutdowns of businesses, schools, and other public places "had high age-adjusted death rates; they had high unemployment and significant GDP losses."
"The study verifies other studies which have found that locking down businesses, stores, churches, schools, and restaurants had almost no impact on health outcomes across states," the report said. "States with strict lockdowns had virtually no better performance in COVID death rates than states that remained mostly open for business."
Utah, Nebraska, Vermont, and Florida were ranked best in the nation for their pandemic response. Overall, 13 of the top 15 ranked states were run by Republicans.
"Shutting down their economies and schools was by far the biggest mistake governors, and state officials made during COVID, particularly in blue states," Stephen Moore, one of the study's authors and co-founder of the Committee To Unleash Prosperity, said.