To simply blame Gary Johnson for every problem, without looking at all of the evidence is pretty naive. The article, although mentioning some criticisms people gave it, doesn't really justify its viewpoint on many topics.
For example, while their point on population growth is true, simply looking at population growth without looking at the growth rates within each age group of the population is largely meaningless. Most states spend a large amount of money on healthcare, education, and pensions, and these are areas where spending depends heavily on the age distribution of the population.
Thus, even though population only increased from 1.7204m to 1.8776m from July 1995 to July 2003, that doesn't tell the whole story. During that time, the age distribution of the population was shifting to the right (i.e., ageing). For example, in the 0-4 year old group, there were 137589 in July 1995, and in July 2003, there were 133815. However, for the 55 to 59 years group, there were 71538 in July 1995 and 104308 in July 2003. Thus, low growth rates for certain age groups are made up for by large growth rates in other age groups.
Many studies have shown that most healthcare spending is spent on a small group of the population (typically, the elderly makes up a large portion of this group). So, if a state is seeing many more people move into the elderly portion of their lives, healthcare expenditures are probably going to have to increase to accommodate for those increased expenditures.
The author makes no note of this, and just says that we can rule out this being due to population growth. I say that is pretty unreasonable considering the fact that healthcare spending makes up one of the biggest portions of the state budget. And simply saying since inflation was only X% without thinking of how price inflation in different sectors will affect the budget is pretty ignorant as well. For example, it is widely acknowledged that price inflation for medical care is much higher than price inflation for many other goods and services. This would act as a double whammy on the budget since they have MORE old people and the cost of healthcare is rising FASTER than normal prices are.
Lo and behold, spending by the state of New Mexico on healthcare roughly doubled during that time period.
Yes, Gary Johnson's record isn't perfect, but a critical look at the actual facts, as opposed to some highly questionable analysis, would tell us that he didn't do too bad.
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