Nicholas Kusnetz from the Center for Public Integrity takes to the pages of USA Today to present his organization's data-driven ranking of the transparency--and corruptibility--of all 50 state governments

The best grade in the nation went to Alaska--but that grade was just a C. California ranked second with a C, followed by Connecticut with a C-. In all, 11 states received failing grades. 

The results are “disappointing but not surprising,” said Paula A. Franzese, an expert in state and local government ethics at Seton Hall University School of Law and former chairwoman of the New Jersey State Ethics Commission. Franzese said that as many states struggle financially, ethics oversight is among the last issues to receive funding. “It’s not the sort of issue that commands voters,” she said.

Aside from a few exceptions, there has been little progress on these issues since the State Integrity Investigation was first carried out in 2012. In fact, most scores have dropped since then, though some of that is attributable to changes made to improve and update the project and its methodology

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