People live longer in blue states than in red states; new study points to impact of state policies

Weak environmental protections, safety rules and labor and civil rights protections may be cutting lives short in conservative states and deepening the divide between red and blue states, according to a new study on links between life expectancy and state policy.

Some states, mostly in the Northeast and the West, have seen average life expectancies rise relatively steadily, placing them on par with the wealthiest nations of Western Europe. Those states tend to have more stringent regulations.

By contrast, the life expectancy in states with more conservative health, labor and social policies — concentrated in the South and Appalachia — has stagnated in recent decades, according to the study, which adds to growing research on health and political disparities between states.

Seattle Times

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