Jan 14, 2016 10:27 PM GMT
Politics January 11, 2016
•42% identify as independents, 29% as Democrats, 26% as Republicans
•Independent identification at least 40% for fifth consecutive year
•Democrats maintain edge over GOP in party identification and leaning
Democrats Maintain Edge When Independents' Leanings Are Factored In
Although political independents lack a strong enough attachment to either party to say they identify as a Republican or a Democrat, most are inclined to favor one party over the other and generally vote that way. After initially asking Americans if they identify as a Republican, a Democrat or an independent, Gallup then probes independents as to whether they lean toward the Republican or the Democratic Party. The combined percentages of party identifiers and leaners give a sense of the relative strength of the two major parties in the U.S., because in most elections, voters are asked to choose a candidate from one of the two parties.