ISNULL(@variable,'') returns NULL on one server, empty string on another

A query

      @state_code            varchar(2)
SELECT @state_code = ''

DECLARE @state_def varchar(30)
SELECT @state_def  =  ISNULL(definition,'')
FROM cd_states
WHERE state_code = @state_code

SELECT @state_def  

@state_def   returns NULL on one server and empty string on another.

User options as defined by @@OPTIONS are the same. No ANSI connection settings change.
SQL 2005 compatibility

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Brian CroweDatabase AdministratorCommented:
If there is no record in cd_states where state_code = @state_code then there are no records found and hence the ISNULL function is never called.


SELECT @state_def  =  definition
FROM cd_states
WHERE state_code = @state_code

SELECT ISNULL(@state_def, '')

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Microsoft SQL Server 2005

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