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  /  News   /  Which state represents America the greatest?

Which state represents America the greatest?

CHICAGO (NewsNation) — Illinois is considered the most American state in the U.S., according to multiple data-driven reports.

The most recent data analysis by The Washington Post compared U.S. Census variables of each state to the nation’s total average. The results found the U.S. and Illinois Census data is nearly identical.

Analysts wanted to find which state was the “most American” to help determine if the results in one state could predict those in another. Also, if Iowa and New Hampshire were not the best states to kick off presidential primary elections, which state would be the best to represent America as a whole?

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Illinois ranks #1 overall

In February, data analysis by WalletHub discovered that Illinois, Florida and Ohio were “far better” to represent the electoral than Iowa and New Hampshire. Iowa only ranked 19th and New Hampshire ranked 36th when comparing their demographics with the U.S. population.

The metrics for these analyses were averaged between variables of race, religion, income, education, work, gender, age and social issues in each state.

In both analyses, Illinois ranked first in overall representation of Americans. The Washington Post found Illinois had a 91% similarity to the U.S. population while WalletHub found Illinois had a 94% similarity when all demographics were averaged.

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“It’s most similar in terms of gender, age, the share of residents born in the U.S. and the unemployment rate, with more than 99% similarity for each of those metrics,” according to the WalletHub survey.

Florida followed in second and Ohio in third. The states with the furthest overall representation included Utah, Mississippi and Alabama.

Not the first time Illinois ranks at top

Plus, it’s not the first time Illinois has been at the top of the list, comparing the closest to the overall American population. The Washington Post reported that since at least 2009, the Land of Lincoln has been at the top consistently. Plus, a 2016 report by NPR that compared Census data during the presidential election also found Illinois to be the top state averaged to represent Americans.

So, if Illinois has ranked consistently at the top, why doesn’t it host the first presidential primary election?

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Iowa and New Hampshire have been the first stop for presidential candidates since 1976, according to the National Constitution Center. This is because both parties have held their first primaries in Iowa since 1976 and Iowa passed a law saying its caucuses needed to hold its election at least eight days before any other state, the NCC reported.

But despite their lower rankings, both states have proved pivotal for both parties during the presidential nomination, Deseret News reported.

“Instead of basing the order on tradition or political favor, we should consider putting the most representative states first during the presidential primaries,” WalletHub analyst Cassandra Happe said.