Friday, December 23, 2011

USA TODAY: Voters leaving Republican, Democratic parties in droves

Registered Democrats still dominate the political playing field with more than 42 million voters, compared to 30 million Republicans and 24 million independents. But Democrats have lost the most — 1.7 million, or 3.9%, from 2008.

Democratic registration has fared worse than Republicans in Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina and Pennsylvania — the eight swing states with party registration. Republican losses are biggest in Nevada, New Hampshire and Pennsylvania.

The decline is due to a variety of factors. People move, people die, people revolt in disgust. Many are stripped from registration rolls by states seeking to remove inactive voters.

By contrast, the number of independents has grown for years and is up more than 400,000 since 2008, or 1.7%. States with big gains: Colorado, Florida, North Carolina — and Arizona, a possible target for President Obama in 2012.


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