The Washington Post

The United States of Search

If ever you needed proof of the diversity of the American electorate, the map below will provide it.

A search company out of California by the name of Google, developed a list of seven political issues and then culled through a year's worth of search data to see which terms were used most commonly in which states.

Before we get to a few of our the results, here's the map (you can see a larger version here):

Some of the results are not surprising. Abortion is the top search term in southern states like Mississippi, Texas and Georgia as well as in Washington, D.C., which almost certainly has to do with the number of political and policy people inside the Beltway.

Concerns (or at least high search volume) regarding the national debt are highest in five mountain west states.   Social Security is a common search term in some of the nation's older states like Florida and West Virginia.

The biggest surprise for us? Kentucky is the state where searches for legalization of marijuana are highest. Yes, Kentucky. One possible explanation: There is an effort to pass a law legalizing medicinal marijuana in the state, which could generate some search interest.

Chris Cillizza writes “The Fix,” a politics blog for the Washington Post. He also covers the White House.



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