The ANES Guide to Public Opinion and Electoral Behavior

Strength of Partisanship 1952-2016

  '52 '54 '56 '58 '60 '62 '64 '66 '68 '70 '72 '74 '76 '78 '80 '82 '84 '86 '88 '90 '92 '94 '96 '98 '00 '02 '04 '08 '12 '16
Independent 9
(158)
11
(124)
13
(222)
11
(202)
12
(235)
12
(150)
9
(135)
13
(172)
12
(185)
14
(205)
15
(392)
18
(439)
15
(441)
16
(371)
15
(243)
13
(184)
13
(283)
14
(296)
12
(248)
12
(236)
13
(313)
12
(206)
10
(173)
12
(154)
13
(242)
9
(127)
10
(119)
11
(261)
14
(839)
15
(622)
Leaning independent 17
(299)
15
(165)
15
(257)
12
(219)
13
(249)
13
(173)
15
(232)
16
(205)
19
(288)
18
(273)
22
(581)
22
(546)
22
(614)
24
(545)
22
(349)
19
(267)
23
(519)
21
(460)
25
(510)
24
(478)
27
(659)
25
(446)
26
(438)
24
(308)
28
(507)
28
(416)
29
(348)
29
(663)
24
(1411)
22
(934)
Weak Partisan 39
(694)
40
(447)
37
(652)
39
(703)
39
(739)
40
(509)
38
(595)
43
(548)
40
(620)
39
(587)
39
(1046)
35
(877)
39
(1119)
37
(849)
37
(597)
38
(541)
35
(778)
37
(794)
31
(640)
34
(670)
32
(781)
33
(593)
34
(587)
34
(438)
27
(483)
33
(485)
28
(335)
28
(639)
28
(1621)
26
(1086)
Strong Partisan 35
(633)
35
(394)
36
(626)
38
(684)
36
(688)
35
(455)
38
(588)
28
(353)
30
(460)
29
(436)
25
(675)
26
(643)
24
(677)
23
(518)
26
(423)
30
(419)
29
(656)
28
(616)
31
(634)
30
(582)
29
(721)
30
(541)
30
(511)
29
(376)
31
(566)
31
(460)
33
(394)
32
(731)
34
(2023)
38
(1597)
N 1784 1130 1757 1808 1911 1287 1550 1278 1553 1501 2694 2505 2851 2283 1612 1411 2236 2166 2032 1966 2474 1786 1709 1276 1798 1488 1196 2294 5894 4239

Percentage Within Study Year
Table 2A.3.

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Question Text:

"Generally speaking, do you usually think of yourself as a Republican, a Democrat, an Independent, or what?"
(IF REPUBLICAN OR DEMOCRAT) "Would you call yourself a strong (REPUBLICAN/DEMOCRAT) or a not very strong (REPUBLICAN/DEMOCRAT)?"
(IF INDEPENDENT, OTHER [1966 and later: OR NO PREFERENCE]:) "Do you think of yourself as closer to the Republican or Democratic party?"

Percent among demographic groups who responded:

Independent
Leaning independent
Weak Partisan
Strong Partisan

Note:

Collapsed from the 7-point Party ID summary (Table 2A.1). The 7-point Party ID summary has been revised in 2010 to conform, as much as possible, with the December, 2009 ANES memo on its construction.

2012 and 2016 data are for the combined (face-to-face and internet) sample.

In 2012 face-to-face administration, a response of 'Neither' to the followup question "Do you think of yourself as closer to the Republican or Democratic party?" was a volunteered response (not read aloud by the interviewer as an answer choice). For 2012 Internet respondents, however, the 'Neither' choice was present onscreen as a response option, and as a result more Internet than face-to-face Respondents became re-coded to Independent (middle category) in the 7-category summary.

Return to the ANES Guide Index.