The report "50 Bright Stars" ranks each state's constitutional commitment to limited government. The rankings were based on assessments of each state's "Jurisprudential Environment"—the strength of limited government provisions in a state constitution and precedent—and "Judicial Environment"—the quality and philosophy of the state judiciary.
The map visually represents the ranking of states according to their constitutional commitment to limited government. States change from black (worst) to blue (middling) to yellow (best) as their constitutional commitment to limited government strengthens.
To produce the rankings, the author assumed equal weighting for each overall category and for each subcategory within each overall category. A description of each category can be found on pages 4 and 16 of the report.
Below states are ranked with their overall limited government assessment scores.
A score of 0: indicates the state currently secures limited government under its state constitution in state court to the same extent as the federal government in federal court under the U.S. Constitution.
A score of 1: indicates there is a definite possibility that limited government is more secure under the state's constitution in state court than under the U.S. Constitution in federal court.
A score of 2: indicates that there is a definite likelihood that limited government is more secure under the state's constitution in state court than under the U.S. Constitution in federal court.