May 4, 2023 - Education

Louisiana ranks last on U.S. News' Best States list

Illustration of a trophy that says "Womp womp."

Illustration: Maura Losch/Axios

U.S. News and World Report released its Best States rankings this week, putting Louisiana all the way at the bottom of its list.

Why it matters: Well, it certainly doesn’t look good. The magazine based its rankings on survey data across eight distinct categories, including subjects like health care, infrastructure, crime and education.

How Louisiana stacks up: This is the fifth time U.S. News has put out its Best States rankings and the fifth time Louisiana lands on the bottom of the list. This year, Utah takes the No. 1 spot, driven in large part by its strengths in education and economy.

  • Back on the Gulf Coast, Florida ranks highest at No. 10, followed by Texas at No. 35, Alabama at No. 44 and Mississippi at No. 48.

Zoom in: The reports survey data pegs Louisiana at No. 50 for two of its eight reviewed categories — crime and corrections and economy — and doesn’t rank above No. 28 for any of the remaining six categories.

  • You can examine each of the categories in detail on the U.S. News website.
  • For example, under “Natural Environment,” Louisiana gets docked for its 3,533 pounds of industrial toxins per square mile, compared to a national average of 926.

Related Axios story: Louisiana releases scores for every water system in the state


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