Are red states outperforming blue states in controlling the coronavirus?

By Kent R. Kroeger (April 21, 2020)

State-level coronavirus numbers are not easily comparable (but that won’t stop me)

The there is no data-centric chart I hate more than those ‘spaghetti-line’ graphs that are the news media’s go-to charts during this coronavirus pandemic. Here is mine showing the number of new coronavirus cases each day for a selection of 29 U.S. states and the District of Columbia:

Data Source: Johns Hopkins University — CSSE (Chart by Kent R. Kroeger)
Data Source: Johns Hopkins University — CSSE (Chart by Kent R. Kroeger)
Data Source: Johns Hopkins University — CSSE (Chart by Kent R. Kroeger)
Data Source: Johns Hopkins University — CSSE (Chart by Kent R. Kroeger)
Methodological Note: The dependent variable (Deaths per 100K) and Pop. Density were log transformed

State above the line

Is it mere coincidence that all of the West Coast states (plus Hawaii) are above the prediction line? While only Hawaii and Washington are statistically significant in their deviation from the prediction line (standardized residuals= -2.67 and -1.97, respectively), Oregon and California are in a consistent direction with their coastal neighbors.

State below the line

Michigan Governor Whitmer has not done her constituents (or her political career) any favors during the coronavirus pandemic. Though the state has done an excellent job of reducing the number of new daily since its peak on April 3rd — from just under 2,000 to only 576 on April 20th — the state has significantly under performed during this crisis with respect to fatalities per capita (23.9 per 100,000 people, see Appendix).

APPENDIX: Model Diagnostic Information

I am a survey and statistical consultant with over 30 -years experience measuring and analyzing public opinion (You can contact me at: kroeger98@yahoo.com)

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