Most Liberal States

Liberalism is a political philosophy and ideology that is based on the rights of the individual, consent to be governed, liberty, freedom of speech and expression, political equality and equality before the law. Many point to the “Age of Enlightenment” in the 17th and 18th centuries as the birthplace of modern liberalism as we know it today. This political ideology was popular amongst Western political, philosophical, economic thinkers like: John Locke (who pioneered ideas that fueled the American Revolution and the U.S. Constitution), Adam Smith, Thomas Paine (who inspired patriots to declare independence from the British in 1776), Jean-Jacques Rousseau, and Voltaire, among many others. Liberalism as a political ideology and philosophy sought to replace the norms of absolute monarchy and the divine right of kings and introduce a system of representative democracy and the rule of law. One of the founding movements for liberalism in Western political thought is the American Revolution and French Revolution of 1789 where proponents of liberalism used the ideology to overthrow royal sovereignty. 

Liberalism as an ideology touches almost every aspect of society, the way a society operates the rules that govern it for example, and the term applies to not only political thought and philosophy but also economics. Liberal economic theory is usually tied to a liberal democratic governmental system, and tends to involve ideas such as free trade, deregulation, low taxes, reduced government spending, privatization, and market flexibility. 

Liberal States

Liberal states are those that espouse liberal views, not just politically speaking, but also economically and socially. Other states are more conservative in nature, while others still are more neutral and often referred to as “swing states”, i.e. states that may have more liberal views in one election cycle and at another have more conservative opinions. 

States which are dubbed liberal may not be entirely liberal per se, but rather states with population-dense areas, like cities, that are home to more liberals. Some of these liberal states include: Massachusetts, California, New York, New Hampshire, Washington, Vermont, Maine, Hawaii, Maryland, and Oregon.

The Most Liberal States in the US

Liberal states in the United States have been placed in order of which one’s population identifies mostly as liberal: 

  1. Massachusetts: a large portion of the state’s population, around 35%, identifies as being liberal while those identifying as moderate, 38%, make up the largest group. 
  2. Maine: around 33% of the state’s population identifies as being liberal with however even more people (35%) identifying as conservative, and 29% identifying as moderate. 
  3. Vermont: in this state 32% of people identify as liberal and 28% identify as conservative.
  4. Washington: 31% of people in this state identify as liberal and 28% identify as conservative. 
  5. New York: around 30% of voters view themselves as liberal while 27% see themselves as conservative. 
  6. New Hampshire: tied with New York, 30% of New Hampshire’s voters identify as liberal while 28% view themselves as conservative. 
  7. California: this state sees 29% of voters identifying as liberal and another 29% as conservative. Those who view themselves as moderates, 36%, make up the majority. 
  8. Oregon: Oregon has a population where 28% see themselves as liberal while 35% see themselves as moderate, and 32% as conservative.
  9. Maryland: this state is tied with Oregon, seeing 28% of Maryland’s population identify as liberal, 29% viewing themselves as conservative, and 39% identifying as moderate.
  10. Hawaii: the island state of Hawaii is also tied with Maryland and Oregon with 28% of voters identifying as liberal, 22% as conservative, and a large portion identifying as moderate, at 45%.

Liberal Political Identification by State

Alabama - Liberal Political Identification

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14%

#48 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

46%

#2 in the US

Alaska - Liberal Political Identification

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17%

#39 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

40%

#13 in the US

Arizona - Liberal Political Identification

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21%

#26 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

37%

#24 in the US

Arkansas - Liberal Political Identification

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15%

#45 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

41%

#9 in the US

California - Liberal Political Identification

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29%

#7 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

29%

#40 in the US

Colorado - Liberal Political Identification

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26%

#14 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

33%

#32 in the US

Connecticut - Liberal Political Identification

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27%

#11 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

30%

#39 in the US

Delaware - Liberal Political Identification

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24%

#17 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

29%

#41 in the US

Florida - Liberal Political Identification

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22%

#23 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

36%

#26 in the US

Georgia - Liberal Political Identification

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19%

#33 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

39%

#15 in the US

Hawaii - Liberal Political Identification

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28%

#8 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

22%

#49 in the US

Idaho - Liberal Political Identification

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17%

#40 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

40%

#14 in the US

Illinois - Liberal Political Identification

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27%

#12 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

31%

#38 in the US

Indiana - Liberal Political Identification

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17%

#41 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

39%

#16 in the US

Iowa - Liberal Political Identification

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21%

#27 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

35%

#28 in the US

Kansas - Liberal Political Identification

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18%

#34 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

39%

#17 in the US

Kentucky - Liberal Political Identification

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20%

#29 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

39%

#18 in the US

Louisiana - Liberal Political Identification

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15%

#46 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

43%

#6 in the US

Maine - Liberal Political Identification

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33%

#2 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

35%

#29 in the US

Maryland - Liberal Political Identification

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28%

#9 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

29%

#42 in the US

Massachusetts - Liberal Political Identification

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35%

#1 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

21%

#50 in the US

Michigan - Liberal Political Identification

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23%

#21 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

33%

#33 in the US

Minnesota - Liberal Political Identification

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25%

#15 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

32%

#36 in the US

Mississippi - Liberal Political Identification

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12%

#50 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

50%

#1 in the US

Missouri - Liberal Political Identification

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20%

#30 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

41%

#10 in the US

Montana - Liberal Political Identification

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18%

#35 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

39%

#19 in the US

Nebraska - Liberal Political Identification

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22%

#24 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

36%

#27 in the US

Nevada - Liberal Political Identification

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23%

#22 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

33%

#34 in the US

New Hampshire - Liberal Political Identification

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30%

#5 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

28%

#45 in the US

New Jersey - Liberal Political Identification

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27%

#13 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

29%

#43 in the US

New Mexico - Liberal Political Identification

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20%

#31 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

38%

#22 in the US

New York - Liberal Political Identification

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30%

#6 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

27%

#48 in the US

North Carolina - Liberal Political Identification

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21%

#28 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

39%

#20 in the US

North Dakota - Liberal Political Identification

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18%

#36 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

39%

#21 in the US

Ohio - Liberal Political Identification

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22%

#25 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

37%

#25 in the US

Oklahoma - Liberal Political Identification

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18%

#37 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

43%

#7 in the US

Oregon - Liberal Political Identification

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28%

#10 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

32%

#37 in the US

Pennsylvania - Liberal Political Identification

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24%

#18 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

34%

#31 in the US

Rhode Island - Liberal Political Identification

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25%

#16 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

29%

#44 in the US

South Carolina - Liberal Political Identification

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16%

#44 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

41%

#11 in the US

South Dakota - Liberal Political Identification

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13%

#49 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

44%

#5 in the US

Tennessee - Liberal Political Identification

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17%

#42 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

43%

#8 in the US

Texas - Liberal Political Identification

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20%

#32 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

38%

#23 in the US

Utah - Liberal Political Identification

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15%

#47 in the US

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41%

#12 in the US

Vermont - Liberal Political Identification

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32%

#3 in the US

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28%

#46 in the US

Virginia - Liberal Political Identification

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24%

#19 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

33%

#35 in the US

Washington - Liberal Political Identification

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31%

#4 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

28%

#47 in the US

West Virginia - Liberal Political Identification

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17%

#43 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

45%

#4 in the US

Wisconsin - Liberal Political Identification

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24%

#20 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

35%

#30 in the US

Wyoming - Liberal Political Identification

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18%

#38 in the US

CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL IDENTIFICATIONhelp

46%

#3 in the US

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0%

#51 in the US