Independents, Raise Your Hands
Which major party is swelling its ranks? Neither. Which major party is seeing its ranks dwindle? Democrats. Which bloc of voters is experiencing a surge? Independents. That’s the conclusion of Gallup polling involving an aggregate of 21 separate Gallup and USA Today polls conducted in 2010 with a sample of more than 25,000 adults.
Be forewarned. If you’re a Democrat, you may want to leave this article now and find something else to do.
In just two years the number of adult Americans who identify as Democrats has dropped by 5%, the largest two year decline since Gallup began compiling these numbers in 1988. But it gets worse. The period from 2008 to 2010 is the only time in the history of tracking these statistics that a party has gone from its highest level to its lowest level in a two year span. That’s right. A 22 year high in 2008; a 22 year low in 2010.
Are the Republicans the beneficiaries of the Democrats woes. Well, no…and yes. Republicans have gained only 1 point among those identifying as GOPers. The yes for Republicans comes from the change in numbers when including Independents who lean one way or the other. If you’re a Democrat and you’re still reading this, you really want to leave now. Really.
In 2008, Democrats and Independents leaning Democratic held a 12 point edge over Republicans and Independents leaning Republican. Today it’s 1 point. That’s an 11 point slip in two years. And it’s not trending the Democrats way.
Americans who identify as Independents are near a 22 year high and haven’t been at this level since 1994-95. Virtually all of the movement of the past two years has been from Democratic affiliation to Independent. Independents are now the clear “majority party” in America, by the widest margin ever. Here are the numbers:
Independent – 38%
Democrat – 31%
Republican – 29%
And here’s the link.