Gallup: Independents remain at 2011 high, Democrats gain slightly in leaners

posted at 8:41 am on January 9, 2013 by Ed Morrissey

Party affiliation shifted only slightly in 2012, a new poll by Gallup finds, both in terms of absolute affiliation and in leaners.  Democrats re-established their lead over Republicans in both measures, but not as significantly as after the 2008 election.  Independents continued to hold a historical lead over both parties in absolute terms:

An average of 47% of Americans identified as Democrats or said they were independents who leaned Democratic in 2012, compared with 42% who identified as or leaned Republican. That re-establishes a Democratic edge in party affiliation after the two parties were essentially tied in 2010 and 2011. …

In 2012, 31% of Americans identified as Democrats, with an additional 16% initially saying they were independent but when asked if they leaned toward either party, they said Democratic. Meanwhile, 28% of Americans identified as Republicans, with another 14% leaning toward the GOP.

That’s not particularly good news for either party, however.  While Republican leaners dropped four points, respondents identifying as Republicans increased by a single point from 2011, while those identifying as Democrats stayed even.  The real advantage is in unaffiliated voters — and that option is more popular than it has been in 25 years of polling:

Americans last year continued their trend toward greater political independence. The 40% who initially identified as political independents matched the record high from 2011. That is particularly notable, given that the usual pattern is for the percentage of Americans identifying as independents to decline in a presidential election year. In each of the last four presidential election years, dating back to 1996, the percentage of independents was lower than in the year prior to the election.

Gallup’s chart shows the status quo quite clearly:

This result seems a bit surprising, given the results of the election.  One would have expected a swell of support for Obama to have been reflected in self-identification, as happened in 2008 (and in 2006 after the midterms, when Democrats regained the advantage over Republicans).  That phenomenon didn’t take place, although it still could manifest itself in 2013, depending on the result of policy battles in Washington.  This was a status-quo election, and it took place in a status-quo electorate.


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This was a status-quo election, and it took place in a status-quo electorate.

Which is insane. The fact that a majority of Americans actually wanted 4 more years of the same scares the crap out of me. I suppose Obama and the Dems have done a good job delaying the real pain of their policies(and blaming the current pain on Bush and the GOP), although this country is in for a rude awakening between now and 2016.

Doughboy on January 9, 2013 at 8:45 AM

Gallup and all pollsters are dead to me after they screwed up the polling before November 6th. It is clear that they no longer have an effective way of reaching a legitimate cross-section of Americans.

Happy Nomad on January 9, 2013 at 8:46 AM

This result seems a bit surprising, given the results of the election. One would have expected a swell of support for Obama to have been reflected in self-identification, as happened in 2008 (and in 2006 after the midterms, when Democrats regained the advantage over Republicans).

You have it backwards. You would have expected the voting to reflect self identification. Knowing so many people in my area that turned from Obama after his first term, his victory was surprising.

Maybe the ballot tabulations don’t match how they actually voted? How else can precincts vote 100% fascist or turn out 140% of registered voters?

ROCnPhilly on January 9, 2013 at 8:52 AM

Independents remain at 2011 high

The jokes just write themselves.

Fallon on January 9, 2013 at 8:53 AM

The fact that a majority of Americans actually wanted 4 more years of the same scares the crap out of me. I suppose Obama and the Dems have done a good job delaying the real pain of their policies(and blaming the current pain on Bush and the GOP), although this country is in for a rude awakening between now and 2016.

Doughboy on January 9, 2013 at 8:45 AM

I think you answered your own question. It isn’t that a majority of Americans wanted four more years of the rat-eared wonder as much as it was they didn’t want to face the pain that all but the low-intelligence lefties understand. Sooner or later there has to be a reckoning and that will mean cuts to entitlement programs. A majority of Americans proved to be greedy myopic parasites who don’t pay into these programs so they think that it is all “free” stuff to be financed by others.

The dirty little secret is that these parasites are going to be the hardest hit when the economy heads further south. Low-intelligence lefties with no marketable skills will be the first to find themselves without a job or a future.

One example. Barak Obama is very proud of his community organizing skills. Yet, the unemployment rate among young black males is 22%. What has the filthy bastard done to help them better their lives beyond sic his vile wife on America to lie about “food deserts” in the ghetto and nag about calories? In the upcoming depression, even more young black males will be out of work. The solution to this problem is jobs and not wealth redistribution. You don’t get there by refusing to look at entitlement reform even as you throw more “free stuff” in the mix through Obamacare and pandering to filthy sluts who think they shouldn’t have to pay for their own contraception.

Happy Nomad on January 9, 2013 at 8:54 AM

Which is insane. The fact that a majority of Americans actually wanted 4 more years of the same scares the crap out of me. I suppose Obama and the Dems have done a good job delaying the real pain of their policies(and blaming the current pain on Bush and the GOP), although this country is in for a rude awakening between now and 2016.

Doughboy on January 9, 2013 at 8:45 AM

be ready for a rough 2016 as well because the US will profit greatly from the energy boom currently going on and this will lift the economy… Obama is a lucky benefiting from the shale gas boom.

nathor on January 9, 2013 at 8:55 AM

be ready for a rough 2016 as well because the US will profit greatly from the energy boom currently going on and this will lift the economy… Obama is a lucky benefiting from the shale gas boom.

nathor on January 9, 2013 at 8:55 AM

Except that the filthy bastard’s EPA pretty much fights expansion of alternative energy other than the billions siphoned off for political contributors who “happen” to be running sham wind and solar companies which are really nothing more than laundramats for Dem fundraising.

Happy Nomad on January 9, 2013 at 8:58 AM

Polling the deceased and the Lizard People would significantly improve the correlation between the polls and the election results.

Archivarix on January 9, 2013 at 9:02 AM

This was a status-quo election, and it took place in a status-quo electorate.

Would you say that same thing about the 2010 election, Ed?

Look at the numbers in that Party Identification graph for 2010 — they’re nearly identical to 2012. Yet, this is the conclusion you draw?

So much for the “power of polls” …

ShainS on January 9, 2013 at 9:02 AM

Any right-leaners here that can honestly say they personally know more people who voted against Obama the first time and for him the second than vice versa?

Only proven pro-Americans need respond. Libs should take this time to head over to cnn for today’s yummy “truth bytes” because we will be ignoring known trolls for this.

ROCnPhilly on January 9, 2013 at 9:03 AM

be ready for a rough 2016 as well because the US will profit greatly from the energy boom currently going on and this will lift the economy… Obama is a lucky benefiting from the shale gas boom.

nathor on January 9, 2013 at 8:55 AM

All that’ll do is offset Obama’s war on coal and oil. That ain’t gonna make those trillion-dollar deficits and tens of trillions in unfunded liabilities magically disappear.

Doughboy on January 9, 2013 at 9:04 AM

Look at the numbers in that Party Identification graph for 2010 — they’re nearly identical to 2012. Yet, this is the conclusion you draw?

ShainS on January 9, 2013 at 9:02 AM

Behold the power of community organizing, otherwise known as “vote rigging”. Vote early, vote often, and don’t forget to tip the programmer who worked on your voting machine.

Archivarix on January 9, 2013 at 9:10 AM

Dead voters and Disney cartoon characters lean much more heavily Democrat than they did in 2010. That explains the 2012 election results.

DRayRaven on January 9, 2013 at 9:11 AM

be ready for a rough 2016 as well because the US will profit greatly from the energy boom currently going on and this will lift the economy… Obama is a lucky benefiting from the shale gas boom.

nathor on January 9, 2013 at 8:55 AM

Bill Clinton could fully benefit from the Internet boom because there was not a major part of the Democrat coalition at the time who was opposed to it. If 0bama embraces the shale boom, he guarantees a plausible challenge from the Green Party. If he rejects it, he dooms the economy.

Sekhmet on January 9, 2013 at 9:13 AM

If 0bama embraces the shale boom, he guarantees a plausible challenge from the Green Party. If he rejects it, he dooms the economy.

Sekhmet on January 9, 2013 at 9:13 AM

You say the last thing as if he sees it as a drawback.

Archivarix on January 9, 2013 at 9:16 AM

I now identify as a Lizardian.

Lizard Man 2016

Bishop on January 9, 2013 at 9:18 AM

We are so screwed.

rollthedice on January 9, 2013 at 9:20 AM

I’m sorry, but unless Gallup releases the racial and regional demographics of their poll then I’m not buying a thin they are selling. Their national polls were DEAD WRONG in 2012 and they need to account for them if they are to retain any credibility. Far as I’m concerned, they’re as shilly as Rasberries over there.

libfreeordie on January 9, 2013 at 9:23 AM

Lizard Man 2016

Bishop on January 9, 2013 at 9:18 AM

I still have a “Cthulhu/Satan 2008 – Why choose a lesser evil?” sticker.

Archivarix on January 9, 2013 at 9:25 AM

Any right-leaners here that can honestly say they personally know more people who voted against Obama the first time and for him the second than vice versa?

Only proven pro-Americans need respond. Libs should take this time to head over to cnn for today’s yummy “truth bytes” because we will be ignoring known trolls for this.

ROCnPhilly on January 9, 2013 at 9:03 AM

In 2012 Obama lost approximately 4 millions of his votes from 2008… Romney got 1 million votes more than McCain… Unfortunately it was not enough…

mnjg on January 9, 2013 at 9:26 AM

be ready for a rough 2016 as well because the US will profit greatly from the energy boom currently going on and this will lift the economy… Obama is a lucky benefiting from the shale gas boom.

nathor on January 9, 2013 at 8:55 AM

So the enviromentalist lunatics have been defeated… Great news indeed…

mnjg on January 9, 2013 at 9:28 AM

In 2008, I voted for Gov. Palin because she represented my values. They had that other guy at the top of the tickety because it was “his turn.” Voted mix of Libertarian and Republican.

In 2010, voted for every Republican on the ticket because it was a conservative wave. Very excited about the landslide victory, we were about to put our fiscal house back in order. Nothing changed at all.

In 2012, voted for Gary Johnson and one Libertarian (can’t even remember his name). Left the rest of the ticket blank. Pox on both their houses.

Panther on January 9, 2013 at 9:31 AM

Good thing former Vice President Gore is busy.

My hero, The current Governor of Virginia, has promulgated a plan to repeal state taxes on gasoline.

I discussed it a liberal who informed me that any tax removal is now thought to come from Dante and serves one of the Seven Deadly Sins. They then called back with the realization that battery operated golf carts with headlights (like the Volt), the laudable high gas prices to make people walk and push their possessions in shopping carts, the tank fill ups at $100 each which reinforce a hatred of big oil and capitalism and the flow of money to highway projects were not going to be helped.

I think we should watch this guy. Some conservative could start prepping now to write to the New York Times hating his liberal guts.

IlikedAUH2O on January 9, 2013 at 9:35 AM

In 2012, voted for Gary Johnson and one Libertarian (can’t even remember his name). Left the rest of the ticket blank. Pox on both their houses.

Panther on January 9, 2013 at 9:31 AM

The 2012 was the best idea you had. You really showed those libs. Convince a few million more to do it.

IlikedAUH2O on January 9, 2013 at 9:36 AM

LOL. The liberal wants him impeached.

First, notice how little noise in the media about the recent deductions from paychecks recently?

Second, even if it isn’t the grandest plan in history this is why our Gov’s brain reminds me of Winston Churchill – no not the wartime guy, the younger, common sense “Bulldog” character:

 Currently there are 91,000 alternative fuel vehicles in Virginia. These vehicles pay little to no gas tax, yet cause a similar amount of damage to Virginia’s roadways as conventional fuel vehicles. As gas prices continue to increase and more people turn to alternative fuel vehicles, the amount of revenue lost will continue to grow.

I am sure that this is popular with electric car nuts./sarc

The media is working on discrediting this as we speak.

IlikedAUH2O on January 9, 2013 at 9:43 AM

The 2012 was the best idea you had. You really showed those libs. Convince a few million more to do it.

IlikedAUH2O on January 9, 2013 at 9:36 AM

Which libs? The republicans or democrats? I really can’t tell them apart anymore.

Panther on January 9, 2013 at 9:48 AM

Which libs? The republicans or democrats? I really can’t tell them apart anymore.

Panther on January 9, 2013 at 9:48 AM

I can’t tell the difference either. They are all the same. I am lost as to why all the people here get lathered up over stupid small differences.

There is no difference. Like between Senator Leahy and Senator Jeff Sessions, for example.

The Vermont Senator is anti-crime. He appears in Batman movies. What could be more anti-crime than that?

Now, he is too honest to allow his decisions on the Judiciary Cmte. to be impacted in favor of Hollywood. He is leaving money to a library in Vermont for comic books or something to teach crime fighting just like Hollywood pursues justice, in a pretend world of real problems and fantasy.

He wants sanctuary cities to keep getting federal money. He wants Sheriff Joe to be investigated for profiling and for the Feds to go after Joe for any federal money he many be misusing for jailing illegal after profiling.

He voted NO on the border fence. He voted NO on welfare limit for illegals and etc. He voted YES to allow illegal to enter the Social Security system and be given healthcare.

Next is Jeff Sessions.

IlikedAUH2O on January 9, 2013 at 10:42 AM

…S T U P I D…!

KOOLAID2 on January 9, 2013 at 10:55 AM

In 2012 Obama lost approximately 4 millions of his votes from 2008… Romney got 1 million votes more than McCain… Unfortunately it was not enough…

mnjg on January 9, 2013 at 9:26 AM

Location is just as important as quantity. Dems knew that in the Bush/Gore coup attempt in FL and have been able to pinpoint which precincts to target. My personal experiences here in FL, PA, MD, GA are at odds with the voting results. Just curious if others’ experiences were similar or if mine is an outlier.
My experiences before the vote support the poll, not the election results.

ROCnPhilly on January 9, 2013 at 11:14 AM

Jeff was painted up like a clown for photos on the web. This is kinda like Batman movies but I don’t think it was meant to be a cool, entertaining visage for him.

Not too xure..

Here is why he is a clown:

Now Jeff Sessions has not been in any movies but the Daily Show has a blast at his expense. Like most of the right, he gets no spotlight to make him look heroic to you. The others attack him.

What about him on crime?

He brought out real cops. How jejune!

Senator Jeff Sessions, Alabama Republican, introduced two top border immigration agents on Thursday to talk about the lax enforcement directives they are given by the Department of Homeland Security and how illegal immigrants are cheating the system to get into United States even after multiple violent crimes have been committed.

“The Administration claims it has diligently enforced immigration law and that the border is ‘more secure than ever.’ But those on the front lines know this to be untrue. They see the violence, chaos and lawlessness. They have lost confidence in the leadership of their agencies…

As you will hear today, this administration has engaged in a sustained, relentless effort to undermine America’s immigration laws,” said Sessions

Source: Spotlight on corruption. Worldpress dot com.

He also stuck up for an agent who was suspended after busting and illegal:

The unidentified agent could face a three-day suspension after he arrested a 35-year-old illegal immigrant from Mexico who had as many as 10 traffic violations.
The agent was ordered by supervisors to release the individual because he was not a “priority target.” When the officer balked, he was threatened with a three-day suspension and the illegal alien was let go.

Source Foxnews dot com politics Senator Sussessions wants answers.

Finally, last July, our POTUS was attacked for allowing violent illegals to stay in the county.

“The Obama administration released illegal immigrants who went on to commit more crimes, including charges of 19 murders, 3 attempted murders and 142 sex crimes, the House Judiciary Committee said in a report Tuesday.
All told, 16 percent of the nearly 47,000 illegal immigrants the administration was notified of but declined to deport between 2008 and 2011 under its Secure Communities program have gone on to be charged with other crimes, the committee said.”

Washington Times, July 2012, 18 murders, Obama…

So both of these guys are crime fighters and have ideas about the immigration challenge.

See? It is just that one likes comic books and movies about a pretend city on the verge of destruction by criminals when a guy appears to save it in a Batsuit. The other just gets his face painted like a clown since people think he made some racist jokes and keeps worrying about budgets, laws and stuff.

We have people getting killed and a real mess in many areas. There is an active distortion going on, Unfortunately, the same pipeline of delusion confuses issues and camouflages differences.

IlikedAUH2O on January 9, 2013 at 11:19 AM

BREAKING NEWS — OBAMA TO IGNORE CONSITUTION / CONGRESS TO ‘GO AFTER GUNS’

VP Biden states Obama is considerig issuing EXECUTIVE ORDERS, thereby BY-PASSING CONGRESS, to institute new gun laws / regulations as a result of the recent shooting crime…

2ND TERM, NOTHING TO LOSE – OBAMA ‘GOING FOR BROKE’!

easyt65 on January 9, 2013 at 11:44 AM

I changed mine from Republican to unaffiliated after the election. In my state you have to have a party affiliation in order to participate in the caucus. I don’t care about that anymore since I’m through with the Republican Party on a national level until there is a change in the Establishment and leadership, which won’t happen in my lifetime. I will still vote Republican for conservatives in state elections only.

lea on January 9, 2013 at 12:13 PM

Simple – many R/C saw the light, finally, and registered as independents.

Schadenfreude on January 9, 2013 at 12:25 PM

“Leaners”

What the hell is this? Horseshoes??

ToddPA on January 9, 2013 at 12:30 PM

The Republicans are currently in much better shape than they were at this point in 2009 after the 2008 elections. We also have serious economic improvement in many Republican led states and budgets of those states in much better shape than they were 4 years ago. The Republicans need to campaign on a message of taking the same philosophy they have enacted at the state level to the federal level.

crosspatch on January 9, 2013 at 12:44 PM

Look at the numbers in that Party Identification graph for 2010 — they’re nearly identical to 2012. Yet, this is the conclusion you draw?

ShainS on January 9, 2013 at 9:02 AM

Behold the power of community organizing, otherwise known as “vote rigging”. Vote early, vote often, and don’t forget to tip the programmer who worked on your voting machine.

Archivarix on January 9, 2013 at 9:10 AM

Excellent deduction!

ShainS on January 9, 2013 at 1:31 PM

It’s over, Johnny. The republicans will never hold presidential office again. This past election showed us that the country has not only reached the tipping point–it went over it easily. There have been 48 years of welfare queens, takers and the entitlement crowd reproducing at much higher numbers then the productive, God loving, law-abiding makers. 48 years of an assault on our Republic and for what it stands by radicals who have infiltrated the schools, media, religious institutions and entertainment. 48 years of brainwashing of whites that we are all inherently evil and responsible for the sins of the past. That we need to not only bend over backward for all minorities, but that we should step aside for them. That their culture of out of wedlock births, drug usage, crime, dropping out of school, abuse and using of women Is not only fine, but is acceptable and ok to be glorified in music, movies and media, and that our young should wallow in their culture. 48 years of turning women against men to divide and conquer. 48 years of an assault on religion and the traditional family. 48 years of an assault on heterosexuality. It has never been about equality. It has always been about gaining control and power.

The number don’t lie. Either that or perhaps we have been lied to regarding the numbers all along. Either way, enough people are not available or do not care enough about the country to prevent what is in the process of happening to this once shining city on a hill. At some point everyone will care, but for now, they will be happy with free birth control, recreational weed, food stamps and gumbmint checks, big screens, free cell phones and reality TV. Eventually though that will not be enough. By then it will be too late.

My best advice is that enough conservative folks heads to the deepest red states and prosper. Be sure to take your still legal guns and make the best of it while we watch the experiment that the country has become.

Rockshine on January 9, 2013 at 1:38 PM