Education, energy and economy lead Washington to top spot in best states ranking

Photo by Emma Claire on Unsplash

U.S. News & World Report

For the second time, Washington has been named No. 1 in the U.S. News Best States ranking and is the first state to earn the top spot twice in a row.

Washington’s low-carbon energy system and robust secondary education system continue to rank among the nation’s best, as does the state’s economy, the fastest growing in the nation. Shortcomings have proved persistent, too, as the state’s high living and labor costs leave it in the middle of the pack when it comes to opportunity for its residents, according to the Best States rankings.

With its progressive politics, flat taxes and industry-oriented university system, Washington has solidified its place as a tech-sector powerhouse. Amazon recently surpassed Boeing Co. – already struggling with the grounding of its 737 Max jet before the coronavirus pandemic curtailed air travel – as the state’s largest private employer, by number of employees. Google and Facebook employ thousands of workers in the Seattle area, an expansion state leaders hope to see continue.