Who Pays More for Car Insurance: Democrats or Republicans?


democrats or republicans pay more for car insurance
6 min read

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Red states, blue states, and battleground states: we’ll hear a lot about the political leanings of the 50 U.S. states and Washington D.C over the next three months. One battle you might not have considered: Do Democrats or Republicans pay more for car insurance?

Here at Quoted, we’ve investigated whether a person’s voting record has anything to do with his or her premium and we discovered that, according to data gathered by insurers, regular voters are less likely to file a claim than non-voters, and voters therefore enjoy lower rates. However, since insurers don’t have access to private voting data, they can only look at whether or not a person voted, not the party for which they cast their ballot.

Might folks in a red state pay more for their yearly insurance policies than those in a blue? Or vice-versa? We looked at which party electoral votes went to in past presidential races for each state as well as current predictions for the 2016 presidential election when sorting red and blue states. We then used The Zebra’s own data about average insurance premiums by state to determine whether Democrats or Republicans pay more for auto insurance, on a whole.

democrats or republicans

Solid Red States

These 13 states have voted for the Republican presidential candidate in the last six elections—and some have had even longer stretches (like Alaska, which hasn’t cast their electoral votes for a Democratic presidential candidate in 52 years). Here’s what they pay annually for car insurance:

  • Alabama: $1,103
  • Alaska: $1,229
  • Idaho: $919
  • Kansas: $1,254
  • Mississippi: $1,616
  • Nebraska: $1,142
  • North Dakota: $1,377
  • Oklahoma: $1,990
  • South Carolina: $1,261
  • South Dakota: $1,213
  • Texas: $1,762
  • Utah: $1,015
  • Wyoming: $1,176

(Data from Pundit Fact and The Hill)

Battleground States Likely to Go Red in 2016

The following 12 states are generally expected to vote for the Republican presidential candidate in 2016, and they have largely been red over the last several decades:

  • Arizona—(voted Republican in six out of the last seven elections–The Hill): $1,096
  • Arkansas—(red last five of seven elections): $1,309
  • Georgia—(red last six of seven elections): $1,219
  • Indiana—(red last six of seven elections): $996
  • Kentucky—(red last five of seven elections): $1,925
  • Louisiana—(red last five of seven elections): $1,741
  • Missouri—(red last five of seven elections): $1,086
  • Montana—(red last six of seven elections): $1,115
  • North Carolina—(red last six of seven elections — though North Carolina is considered an almost evenly divided state, both The Wall Street Journal and The Hill still call it for Republicans in 2016): $817
  • Ohio—(A true swing state, The Wall Street Journal sees the state perhaps tipping red this year because of the Republican platform’s appeal to white working-class voters): $764
  • Tennessee—(red last five of seven elections): $1,138
  • West Virginia—(red the four most recent elections–blue before that), and 270toWin now counts the state as solidly red: $1,442

red blue cars

Solid Blue States

These 18 states and the capital have each voted for the Democratic presidential candidate in the last six elections at least—some have had longer stretches (from Pundit Fact):

  • California: $1,575
  • Connecticut: $1,625
  • Delaware: $2,073
  • District of Columbia: $1,575
  • Hawaii: $1,150
  • Illinois: $1,003
  • Maine: $937
  • Maryland: $1,500
  • Massachusetts: $1,004
  • Michigan: $2,087
  • Minnesota: $1,227
  • New Jersey: $1,746
  • New York: $1,472
  • Oregon: $1,224
  • Pennsylvania: $1,274
  • Rhode Island: $1,671
  • Vermont: $1,125
  • Washington: $1,177
  • Wisconsin: $1,021

Battleground States Likely to Go Blue in 2016: Average Yearly Insurance Rate for Residents

The following 7 states are generally expected to vote blue in 2016, and they have largely been blue over the last generation:

  • Colorado—(Solidly Democrat in the last two elections and trending more blue all the time, according to The Wall Street Journal): $1,398
  • Florida—(A true swing state, and a tough call for red or blue this year, The Wall Street Journal sees the state perhaps tipping blue for the 2016 presidential election due to the Hispanic population which makes up one in five voters): $1,690
  • Iowa—(The previously red state has voted Democrat in six of the last seven elections (excluding only 2004): $971
  • Nevada—(Solidly Democrat in the last two elections and trending more blue all the time, according to The Wall Street Journal): $1,307
  • New Hampshire—(Blue the last five out of six elections, including the three most recent): $1,117
  • New Mexico—(Blue the last five out of seven elections–from The Hill): $1,158
  • Virginia—(Blue in the last two elections, Virginia was solidly red beforehand. However, The Wall Street Journal sees the state trending blue): $1,002

The Results

Red State Average Yearly Insurance Rates:

Total policy amount for all red states ($31,705) ÷ total states (25) = $1,268 average yearly premium for red state residents.

Blue State Average Yearly Insurance Rates:

Total policy amount for all blue states ($35,109) ÷ total states (25 + D.C.) = $1,350 average yearly premium for blue state residents.

So Do Democrats or Republicans Pay More for Car Insurance?

Based on our calculations, it looks like residents of blue states can expect to pay about $100 more per year for their auto insurance policies than people living in traditionally red states.

Why? Our experiment cannot prove causation, of course, but we have a few ideas about the results:

  • Four of the five biggest U.S. cities are in blue states (New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, and Philadelphia), and we know people in cities tend to pay more for auto insurance.
  • Neil Richardson, licensed insurance agent and resident expert at The Zebra, has a theory: In the red-blue break down above, there are only four “no-fault” red states but there are eight “no-fault” blue states, which could make a difference. “No-fault states require mandatory injury coverage for all drivers and their passengers regardless of which driver causes a crash, and that can drive up the cost of insurance in those states.”