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The Swing Voter

This article is just more proof that independent voters are a canvas onto which people paint their own political aspirations:

But there’s a new factor: unalignment. The American electorate is divided into thirds: Democratic, Republican, and unaligned independents. For this the thid r group, which is heavily white, affluent, suburban and secular, voting Republican is seldom cool or acceptable.

Hardcore Democrats disdain Republicans as macho, war-like, tight-fisted, mean-spirited, intolerant, bigoted and dictatorial. That’s expected. Hardcore Republicans deride Democrats as squishy-soft on national defense and terrorist issues, and obsessed with creating a Utopia on earth. That’s expected.

What’s unexpected is that independents, driven by the “politics of culture,” have turned strongly against the Republicans. For them, issues like abortion rights, gun control, gay rights, immigration reform resonate, and to them, Republicans are on the wrong side. In their estimation, traditional Republican issues—tax cuts, spending slashes and reduced government—have utterly no appeal. They look up government as now good.

So basically, the independent unaligned voters are really just Democrats.  I don’t think it’s that simple.  I don’t pretend that all independents are libertarians, only some of them are, or that they are more socially conservative progressives, some of them are, and I definitely don’t think they are all pretty much Democrats or Republicans who don’t know how to fill out a voter registration.

For various reasons, I think independent voters feel the parties don’t represent their positions, so they stay out of the process.  I certainly feel that way most of the times.

3 Responses to “The Swing Voter”

  1. noops says:

    Well, it’s certainly anecdotal, but all of the independent voters I know are pro-gun (including myself). There are a lot of us in Oregon. Dunno about Massachusetts though.

  2. Weer'd Beard says:

    I’d say from my experience most unenrolled voters have about as much interest in politics as I have with fasion shows. None. They see it as boring, and all the spin and double-speak makes it tedious for them to try and “jump-in”

    Still there’s a huge cultural push for the “If you don’t vote, you can’t complain” which is a fair statement, but it also tends to encourage people who really are confident with the issues to vote. This means the unenrolled voters, if they vote at all (many won’t) will vote for whoever they are most influenced by.

    They come from a conservative house, or town, they will vote conservative, if they’re from the other side the same.

    I might agree only in one part that with media bias of things like the news networks, and things like MTV “Rock the Vote” as well as the majority of most College Capuses, the Donks may have a slight edge.

    Then again, Libertarian has become VERY cool in more places than I would have thought, so maybe it is dead even. I definatly can’t find a strong advantage.

    In the end, most won’t even vote.

  3. Nancy Hanks says:

    Hear, hear! It takes more than a few political pundits in a presidential election year(s) to partisanize independents!
    Good post!
    Nancy

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