State of the States 2012

Stateline takes its annual look at the trends and issues that will be the most discussed topics in state government in the coming year.

January 9, 2012 By John Gramlich, Staff Writer

After a Contentious Political Year, Republicans May Moderate Their Approach

PART ONE OF FIVE: With the 2012 election drawing near, Republican leaders in much of the country are sounding less combative on the legislative front than they did in 2011. More

Interactive: Balance of Power
January 9, 2012 By Gisselle Frias, Special to Stateline

Interactive: Balance of Power

In 2011, Republicans built on their previous state electoral gains. They took complete control of legislatures in Missisippi and Virginia. More

January 10, 2012 By Pamela M. Prah , Staff Writer

Washington and the States: A Year of Uncertainty and Foreboding

PART TWO OF FIVE: Every state knows it is about to get less financial help from the federal government. What none of them knows is just how much less. More

January 11, 2012 By Christine Vestal , Staff Writer

Medicaid: A Year of Excruciating Decisions

PART THREE OF FIVE: For state health officials, rising Medicaid rolls and declining federal support add up to only one scenario: a year of ever tighter budgets. More

January 12, 2012 By Ben Wieder, Staff Writer

Unions Adapt to New Rules, Even as They Fight to Reverse Them

PART FOUR OF FIVE: The most controversial state issue of 2011 — the fight over collective bargaining and other rights for public-sector employees — isn’t going away in 2012. More

January 13, 2012 By Daniel C. Vock , Staff Writer

At Last, a State Budget Year When the Sky Is Not Falling

PART FIVE OF FIVE: After four years of epic budget woes, states are ready for an improved 2012. Some are even poised to add dollars back to programs they wish they never had to cut. More

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