A Gallup poll finds that Wyoming was the most conservative U.S. state in 2013, replacing Alabama, which fell to 10th place. The District of Columbia was once again the most liberal area in the United States, with Vermont and Massachusetts having the highest percentage of liberals among the 50 states.
Overall, Americans were much more likely to self-identify as conservatives than as liberals last year, though that gap shrank from previous years.
The most conservative states are located primarily in the South and West, while the most liberal states are found on the East and West Coasts of the United States, with the exception of Hawaii. The top 10 liberal states all voted for President Barack Obama in 2008 and 2012, while the top 10 conservative states all voted for the Republican nominees — John McCain and Mitt Romney, respectively — in those years.
For the most part, the top conservative states align with the most Republican states in the union, and the top liberal states, with the most Democratic areas. Yet Kansas and Nebraska, two of the most solid Republican states, do not fall among the top 10 conservative states. Similarly, the Democratic states of Maryland, Illinois, Connecticut, and New Mexico are not among the top 10 liberal states, but Gallup found that they were among the solid Democratic states in 2013.
Conservative Advantage Still Predominant, Yet Down From 2012
The national “conservative advantage,” defined as the percentage of residents self-identifying as conservative minus the percentage self-identifying as liberal in each state, was at 14.6 percentage points in 2013. Given that national advantage, only three states (Hawaii, Massachusetts, and Vermont) have a negative score, along with the District of Columbia, meaning they have more liberals than conservatives.
In 2012, the conservative advantage overall was 15.9 points, suggesting that the gap between conservative and liberal self-identification is narrowing.