When controlling for the differences in population across states, the number of deaths from coronavirus is over three times higher in states with Democratic governors than in states with Republican governors. As of Sunday, April 26, states with Republican governors have experienced 57.53 coronavirus deaths per million of population, states with Democratic governors have 179.74 deaths per million of population. Even excluding the state of New York as an extreme outlier, states with Democratic governors have 138.58 deaths per million from coronavirus, still over twice as many coronavirus deaths per million as deaths in states with Republican governors.
It merits emphasis from the get-go that this relationship is obviously not directly causal. The inauguration of Kentucky’s new Democratic governor on December 10, 2019 did not triple the state’s subsequent mortality from the coronavirus relative to what it would have been had Republican incumbent Matt Bevin been reelected.