M. Ray Perryman

M. Ray Perryman

Measures to restrict voter access are under consideration in Texas and elsewhere. Irrespective of politics, such laws have substantial adverse economic consequences. We recently examined this issue in detail. The costs could potentially include billions of dollars and hundreds of thousands of Texas jobs over the next few years. (See the full report at perrymangroup.com.)

Research has shown that, controlling for other factors, decreases in voting access leads to lower earnings which, in turn, impact workforce participation and employment. Reduced earnings then negatively affect household budgets and spending.

In addition, losses occur from reduced travel and tourism. Laws which decrease attendees, for example, often cause conference and event planners to avoid specific areas. Some organizations will also go elsewhere to remove the appearance of approval of the public policy (as indicated by the recent move of the Major League Baseball All-Star Game from Atlanta).

The loss of such major events brings significant costs. Both Dallas and Houston are under consideration for major roles in the 2026 FIFA World Cup, the world’s largest sporting event (and one which puts considerable emphasis on rights issues in selecting sites).

If Texas were to miss the opportunity to be a primary host of the World Cup due to voter suppression, the state could sacrifice almost $3.8 billion in gross product (compared to nearly $1.8 billion for a Super Bowl and $369 million for a Final Four).

Socially conscious consumers also seek to avoid discriminatory areas for business and leisure travel.

Similarly, controversial laws diminish the ability to attract knowledge workers and the companies that employ them, thus reducing long-term economic development prospects.

We estimate that measures restricting voter access would lead to an overall decrease in business activity from lower earnings, employment, and household purchasing power in Texas by 2025 of $14.7 billion in annual gross product and 73,249 in job losses (including multiplier effects). External losses (from tourism and economic development) could cause aggregate decreases of another $16.7 billion in annual gross product and 149,644 in job losses by 2025. These losses compound over time.

Business activity also generates tax revenue. The potential effects associated with measures restricting voter access would cost the state and local governments hundreds of millions of dollars annually.

Access to voting improves earnings, consumer spending, tourism, and development. Conversely, laws restricting access lead to substantial economic and fiscal losses over time. While there are many other important advantages to and compelling reasons for encouraging political participation by all eligible citizens, the economic ramifications are substantial and worthy of significant attention as restrictions on voter access are considered. It is unlikely that we will remove the politics from this discussion, but we should definitely be cognizant of the economics as well. Stay safe.

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M. Ray Perryman is president and chief executive officer of The Perryman Group (www.perrymangroup.com), which has served the needs of over 2,500 clients over the past four decades. perrymangroup.com, info@perrymangroup.com, 254-751-9595.

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(14) comments

Glenn Wilson

Mike, the VA didn't provide a Reply button for your 2:48pm comment, so I'm responding this way.

1)"Obviously you didn’t send a link." -- Neither did you. 2)"You call it dedicated" -- because it's deliberate, focused and relentless. 3)"I say enforcing immigration laws in a humane way." -- Which is exactly how they should be enforced, but being humane doesn't include outright ignoring the existing law, which, BTW, was voted into existence by both parties. 4)"Your cradle to grave comment is just an exaggeration to keep the hate level where you want it" -- Actually, it's a commonly used term to describe the sort of free benefit packages routinely handed out, with no expiration date, to undocumented emigrants. 5)"I know you would like to think that intelligent people don’t join political parties but you have no proof of that." -- Well, I know of 2 right here in this comment section. Again, nice twist. Actually, a large percentage of the members of political parties are intelligent, but by being intelligent they can develop their own ideas and opinions and don't require a party to do that for them. 6)"I think some of the most intelligent people history belonged to political parties." -- And some did not.

Ron Sandidge

The funny thing is he NEVER states what the problem regulations are, just that if we don't do as they say they will take their football and go elsewhere.

The question is who rules our government the legal voting regular citizen or the rich wealthy corporations? MLB left Georgia because Georgia wants to make it secure that ONLY legal voters may vote. And then MLB goes to Colorado where the legal voting rules are more against what they are leaving in GA.

Why is this guy not worried about Delaware, Joe Biden's former senate state where the voting rules are way stricter than what GA wants to do?

Glenn Wilson

"The question is who rules our government the legal voting regular citizen or the rich wealthy corporations? " -- Unfortunately, the answer is the corporations to a much greater degree than anyone else since the Industrial Revolution in the U.S. The Supreme Court then conveniently locked that in place with their Citizens United decision. Because of our representative republic instead of a democracy your non-billionaire "legal voting citizens" have no oversight or control over anything Congress does. We cannot initiate, stop or change anything. We have no vote on any legislation or referendums. All that is handled by our members of Congress, and there are no term limits. As voters, each of us can vote for only 3 of the 535 members of Congress, leaving 532 out of our individual reach. What could possibly go wrong with all that?

Rick Dockery

Stop thinking logically

Glenn Wilson

I'd have to write a column to address Perryman's pile of bullshirt presented here, so I'll try to cover his general theme with this, from his last paragraph, "While there are many other important advantages to and compelling reasons for encouraging political participation by all eligible citizens...". -- Perryman, the key words here are "eligible citizens", and the laws are to provide a requirement for eligible citizens to show that they are eligible and to prevent ineligible individuals from voting. The laws are not intended for preventing ANY eligible voter, or groups thereof, from voting, or making it difficult. This is a problem for Democrats because they need all the imported voters they can buy.

Martin Strarup

I agree Mr. Wilson; I can't fathom how some folks can't seem to grasp the concept of eligible citizens. And to insinuate that it would be far better to allow anyone to vote than to miss out on all the money that we "might" lose from the World Cup or a Superbowl is just how a liberal would think.

Rick Dockery

If you do not do as they wish, they will penalize the state. It's their right however.

Ron Sandidge

Great response Glenn Wilson.

Mike Gomez

When you are writing that column Glenn, perhaps you can explain why we had states that had to have pre-clearance before enacting another Jim Crow voting law. Texas is one of them. Can you include a creditable link documenting Democrats importing voters or is that bullshirt? Voters are leaving the GOP not the other way around…Don’t make me send you proof.

Rick Dockery

Can you elaborate on Jim Crow? I don't feel like I can't vote. I can remember Jim Crow. Just wondering. I show up with an ID just like every other human being

Glenn Wilson

Mike, 1)"...perhaps you can explain why we had states that had to have pre-clearance before enacting another Jim Crow voting law. Texas is one of them." -- Probably because some states had a lingering Jim Crow mentality. Your point is? 2)"Can you include a creditable link documenting Democrats importing voters or is that bullshirt?" -- Can you include a creditable link documenting that the reason Democrats are so dedicated to bringing in all the undocumented immigrants they can, then providing cradle-to-grave everything for them, is because Democrats are such humanitarians? 3)"Voters are leaving the GOP not the other way around…Don’t make me send you proof. -- Nice twist there, but I said nothing about anyone leaving either the Republican or Democrat party. That said, IMO, anyone leaving any political party is demonstrating intelligence and independent thought.

Rick Dockery

"That said, IMO, anyone leaving any political party is demonstrating intelligence and independent thought."

Exactly!

Mike Gomez

Obviously you didn’t send a link. Predictable. You call it dedicated,I say enforcing immigration laws in a humane way. Your cradle to grave comment is just an exaggeration to keep the hate level where you want it.....I know you would like to think that intelligent people don’t join political parties but you have no proof of that. I think some of the most intelligent people history belonged to political parties.

Rick Dockery

If you don't agree=hate. Great argument. If you are in a party and will stand up to the issues you don't agree with, I can understand. If you just nod and smile, well then. Eventually, hopefully, at some point, people will have enough and walk away, look for alternatives.

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