This Is the Most Corrupt State in America

Anuradha Varanasi
·16 min read

Every year, the independent anti-corruption organization Transparency International releases its Corruption Perception Index (CPI) report, an analysis of misconduct in the public sector of regions around the world. According to the most recent CPI report, the United States ranked 23rd out of 180 countries examined. And while the U.S. has consistently ranked far better in comparison to most parts of the world, the CPI indicates that since 2015, corruption has been steadily increasing across the country. With that in mind, Best Life set out to determine the most corrupt state in America.

To find out where corruption is the biggest problem in America, we used data from the Department of Justice (DOJ) to determine the number of public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents in all 50 states. The data accounts for "violations of federal law in bribery, extortion, police brutality, theft of government property, and other cases involving breach of the public trust," according to the DOJ.

We also included data on the number of reported violations by doctors and other healthcare providers filed between 1990 and 2020, according to the National Practitioner Data Bank. We included both the number of adverse action reports (legally required to be filed when a doctor or other healthcare practitioner is reprimanded in any number of ways—from being suspended to having their license revoked—due to some form of misconduct or professional incompetence), as well as medical malpractice payment reports (legally required to be filed when a healthcare organization has issued a payment to a patient who was caused physical harm as result of a doctor's negligence).

Then, we referred to the Coalition for Integrity's most recent States With Anti-Corruption Measures for Public Officials report, known as the S.W.A.M.P. index. Each state's laws are evaluated on their scope and establishment of ethics agencies and, most importantly, how effective those agencies actually are. Transparency exercised by public officials accepting gifts is an example of the factors that contribute to each state's score on the index's 100-point scale, where a score of 0 indicates the highest level of corruption possible.

Finally, we looked at the State Integrity Investigation conducted by The Center for Public Integrity. This is another in-depth assessment of accountability and transparency at the state level. The integrity score is based on 245 questions that delve into key indicators such as public access to information, electoral oversight, internal auditing, state pension fund management, ethics enforcement agencies, and judicial accountability. Again, higher scores mean more integrity, while lower ones equal less.

We then gave each one of these five metrics a weighted value and ran them through our exclusive algorithm to calculate how each state scored on our Corruption Index, where 100 is the most corrupt score a state can receive, and 0 is the least. Read on to discover the most corrupt state in America and find out where yours falls in the mix. And for more on unsavory behavior around the country, This Is the Most Dishonest State in America.

Read the original article on Best Life.

50

Kentucky

frankfort kentucky state capitol buildings
frankfort kentucky state capitol buildings

Annual public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 9

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 15,837

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 5,245

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 74 out of 100

State integrity score: 67 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 0.02

49

Illinois

the capitol building in springfield, illinois
the capitol building in springfield, illinois

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 6

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 29,683

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 17,743

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 55 out of 100

State integrity score: 67 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 3.36

48

South Dakota

South Dakota
South Dakota

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 4

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 2,187

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 855

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 34 out of 100

State integrity score: 56 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 3.87

47

Alaska

alaska state capitol buildings
alaska state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 3

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 3,135

Medical malpractice payment reports: 723

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 69 out of 100

State integrity score: 76 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 4.48

46

Montana

capitol building in helena, montana
capitol building in helena, montana

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 8

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 2,725

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 1,845

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 54 out of 100

State integrity score: 64 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 8.28

45

New York

new york state capitol buildings
new york state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 11

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 28,013

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 61,363

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 56 out of 100

State integrity score: 61 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 11.44

And for the place where people prefer a slower-paced lifestyle, This Is the Laziest State in America.

44

South Carolina

columbia south carolina state capitol buildings
columbia south carolina state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 20

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 11,763

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 4,737

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 65 out of 100

State integrity score: 60 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 11.98

43

Tennessee

tennessee state capitol buildings
tennessee state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 10

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 18,755

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 5,922

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 50 out of 100

State integrity score: 66 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 13.04

42

Florida

tallahassee florida state capitol buildings
tallahassee florida state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 18

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 49,169

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 35,315

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 64 out of 100

State integrity score: 61 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 14.34

And for more on the place where money matters most to people, This Is the Greediest State in America.

41

Mississippi

jackson mississippi
jackson mississippi

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 2

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 14,518

Medical malpractice payment reports: 3,322

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 40 out of 100

State integrity score: 61 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 15.50

40

Louisiana

baton rouge louisiana state capitol buildings
baton rouge louisiana state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 2

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 26,413

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 9,813

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 48 out of 100

State integrity score: 59 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 18.22

39

Ohio

ohio state capitol buildings
ohio state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 12

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 45,024

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 15,432

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 61 out of 100

State integrity score: 68 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 19.44

38

Hawaii

hawaii state capitol buildings
hawaii state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 24

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 1,221

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 1,217

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 64 out of 100

State integrity score: 69 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 19.79

37

Pennsylvania

harrisburg pennsylvania state capitol buildings
harrisburg pennsylvania state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 13

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 31,121

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 36,512

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 51 out of 100

State integrity score: 58 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 20.42

36

Delaware

delaware state capitol buildings
delaware state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 19

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 2,891

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 1,111

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 50 out of 100

State integrity score: 56 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 23.52

35

New Jersey

trenton new jersey state capitol buildings
trenton new jersey state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 17

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 20,905

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 21,368

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 59 out of 100

State integrity score: 65 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 25.10

34

Maryland

maryland state capitol buildings
maryland state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 21

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 14,640

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 8,799

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 56 out of 100

State integrity score: 64 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 28.67

33

West Virginia

west virginia state capitol buildings
west virginia state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 15

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 7,376

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 4,059

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 63 out of 100

State integrity score: 66 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 28.93

32

Alabama

state capitol in montgomery alabama
state capitol in montgomery alabama

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 7

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 23,902

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 2,398

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 35 out of 100

State integrity score: 67 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 30.60

31

Massachusetts

massachusetts state capitol buildings
massachusetts state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 22

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 15,454

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 10,407

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 56 out of 100

State integrity score: 67 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 33.48

30

Missouri

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 23

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 21,593

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 8,116

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 58 out of 100

State integrity score: 62 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 34.79

29

Rhode Island

rhode island state capitol buildings
rhode island state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 28

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 2,962

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 1,997

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 75 out of 100

State integrity score: 68 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 35.48

28

Georgia

georgia state capitol buildings
georgia state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 25

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 14,255

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 9,534

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 40 out of 100

State integrity score: 63 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 37.88

27

Virginia

Virginia state capitol building in the winter in Richmond
Virginia state capitol building in the winter in Richmond

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 16

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 31,340

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 6,622

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 35 out of 100

State integrity score: 66 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 41.00

26

Oklahoma

oklahoma state capitol buildings
oklahoma state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 12

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 25,849

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 4,741

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 42 out of 100

State integrity score: 59 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 41.25

25

North Dakota

north dakota capitol tower
north dakota capitol tower

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 5

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 3,092

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 657

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 0 out of 100

State integrity score: 59 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 44.01

24

California

sacramento california state capitol buildings
sacramento california state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 34

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 85,689

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 52,421

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 75 out of 100

State integrity score: 73 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 44.33

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23

Arkansas

Little Rock Arkansas
Little Rock Arkansas

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 30

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 14,248

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 2,343

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 66 out of 100

State integrity score: 61 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 44.67

22

Kansas

kansas state capitol buildings
kansas state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 36

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 8,868

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 5,336

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 72 out of 100

State integrity score: 59 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 45.61

21

Texas

texas state capitol austin texas
texas state capitol austin texas

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 35

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 93,986

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 28,211

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 62 out of 100

State integrity score: 60 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 48.50

And for more on the place where people are the most unlikely to lend a helping hand, This Is the Most Selfish State in America.

20

Maine

maine state capitol buildings
maine state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 27

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 5,631

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 1,461

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 48 out of 100

State integrity score: 59 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 49.90

19

Wisconsin

madison wisconsin
madison wisconsin

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 37

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 12,794

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 3,550

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 57 out of 100

State integrity score: 63 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 50.50

18

Connecticut

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 29

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 8,207

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 5,475

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 44 out of 100

State integrity score: 71 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 59.35

17

New Mexico

new mexico state capitol buildings
new mexico state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 31

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 5,426

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 3,722

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 36 out of 100

State integrity score: 61 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 63.13

16

Michigan

michigan state capitol buildings
michigan state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 32

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 32,104

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 19,723

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 28 out of 100

State integrity score: 51 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 66.85

15

Nevada

nevada state capitol buildings
nevada state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 45

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 9,566

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 3,018

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 54 out of 100

State integrity score: 57 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 69.90

14

New Hampshire

new hampshire state capitol buildings
new hampshire state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 47

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 4,290

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 1,903

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 67 out of 100

State integrity score: 61 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 70.06

13

Wyoming

wyoming state capitol buildings
wyoming state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 26

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 2,497

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 738

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 12 out of 100

State integrity score: 51 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 70.53

12

North Carolina

north carolina state capitol buildings
north carolina state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 41

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 21,543

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 6,596

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 42 out of 100

State integrity score: 65 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 70.82

11

Indiana

indiana state capitol buildings
indiana state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 33

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 17,734

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 8,948

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 28 out of 100

State integrity score: 62 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 71.65

10

Washington

washington state capitol buildings
washington state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 49

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 31,330

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 8,378

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 78 out of 100

State integrity score: 67 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 74.81

9

Nebraska

nebraska state capitol buildings
nebraska state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 43

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 7,643

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 2,303

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 60 out of 100

State integrity score: 67 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 77.18

8

Minnesota

minnesota state capitol buildings
minnesota state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 46

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 15,681

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 3,362

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 46 out of 100

State integrity score: 62 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 78.42

7

Iowa

iowa city old capitol building in iowa before being moved to des moines
iowa city old capitol building in iowa before being moved to des moines

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 40

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 10,100

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 3,480

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 40 out of 100

State integrity score: 67 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 82.14

6

Idaho

boise idaho skyline
boise idaho skyline

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 39

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 2,921

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 1,190

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 16 out of 100

State integrity score: 62 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 82.26

5

Colorado

colorado state capitol buildings
colorado state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 44

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 26,103

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 5,369

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 57 out of 100

State integrity score: 67 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 83.35

4

Oregon

oregon state capitol buildings
oregon state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 50

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 18,012

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 3,737

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 55 out of 100

State integrity score: 59 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 86.81

3

Arizona

arizona state capitol buildings
arizona state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 38

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 35,307

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 7,947

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 28 out of 100

State integrity score: 64 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 94.82

2

Utah

city skyline of downtown Salt Lake City, Utah at dusk
city skyline of downtown Salt Lake City, Utah at dusk

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 48

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 7,699

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 3,673

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 31 out of 100

State integrity score: 62 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 94.90

1

Vermont

vermont state capitol buildings
vermont state capitol buildings

Public corruption convictions per 10,000 residents: 42

Adverse action reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 3,753

Medical malpractice reports filed from 1990 to 2020: 831

S.W.A.M.P. index score: 37 out of 100

State integrity score: 60 out of 100

Corruption Index Score: 100.00

And for the place where you'll find some serious cannabis enthusiasts, This Is the Most Stoned State in America.