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August 02, 2002

Myth of Independent Voter

For years, we've heard about the breakdown of party loyalty and the rise of non-aligned voters. Well, it turns out (see Washington Post article) it's more wordplay among partisans who like to imagine themseves as above partisanship, but vote and think pretty much like those who call themselves Democrats or Republicans. And the lesson according to researcher David Magleby-- ignore strategies to win over the unconverted middle:

"I would encourage candidates not to play to them. Because they tend to jump on bandwagons, to follow tides. . . . You're better off to work on getting your weak partisans and your leaners."
So the lesson is that the DLC's strategy of playing to the mushy middle is likely to be a failure compared to rallying the troops with partisan red meat.

Posted by Nathan at August 2, 2002 03:13 PM

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