(GALLUP) Independent party identification at record high, Democrat ID at all time low

The following is from Gallup News Poll.

  • 43% identified as independents in 2023, tying 2014 record
  • Record-low 27% identify as Democrats, tying Republicans
  • Republicans maintain slight edge in leaned party identification
  • Ideological identification steady; conservatives, moderates largest groups

Political independents continue to constitute the largest political bloc in the U.S., with an average of 43% of U.S. adults identifying this way in 2023, tying the record high from 2014.

Independent identification has been 40% or higher each year since 2011, except for the 2016 (39%) and 2020 (39%) presidential election years.

Equal 27% shares of U.S. adults identify as Republicans and Democrats, with the Democratic figure marking a new low for that party in Gallup’s trend.

Independents first outnumbered supporters of both major political parties in 1991 and have continued to do so since then, except in several years between 2004 and 2008.

Over time, the increase in the percentage of independents has come more at the expense of Democrats than Republicans, which might be expected since Democrats were previously the largest political group.

Democratic identification has now declined by one point in each of the past three years.

These declines, and the new low registered in 2023, are likely tied to President Joe Biden’s unpopularity. Biden’s job approval ratings have largely been around 40% since late 2021, and were consistently below that mark in OctoberNovember and December.

The record low for Republican identification was 25% in 2013.

Independent Leanings Give Republicans a Slight Edge in Party Preferences

All Gallup survey respondents who identify as independents are then asked whether they lean more toward the Republican Party or the Democratic Party.

Last year, slightly more independents leaned Republican than leaned Democratic.

As a result, a combined 45% of U.S. adults identify as Republicans or lean toward the GOP, while 43% are Democrats or Democratic leaners.

The 2023 figures are similar to those from 2022, when Republicans had a one-point advantage (45% to 44%).

Republican advantages have been rare since Gallup first began measuring independent political leanings on a regular basis in 1991. In fact, 2023 is just the third time Republicans have had even a slight edge, along with 1991 and 2022.

In most years, there have been more Democrats and Democratic leaners than Republicans and Republican leaners, though the two partisan groups were tied in 2002, 2003 and 2011.

As 2024 begins, the parties are closely matched based on political party identification and leanings.

However, Democrats are clearly in a weaker position than they have been in any recent election year. This is based on the new low percentage of U.S. adults identifying as Democrats, as well as the Republican advantage in leaned party identification. 

Link to full article and polling results here.

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2 thoughts on “(GALLUP) Independent party identification at record high, Democrat ID at all time low”

  1. Makes total sense to me as an Independent voter. I’ll choose who I think is best for the job. Unfortunately it leaves me out of local and state elections as only registered Dem’s or Rep’s get to vote. Totally wrong concept.

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