Democrats maintain a slight edge over Republicans, but among those surveyed, an equal amount merely "lean" toward identifying with either party.
According to Gallup, here are the implications:
Increased independent identification is not uncommon in the year before a presidential election year, but the sluggish economy, record levels of distrust in government, and unfavorable views of both parties helped to create an environment that fostered political independence more than in any other pre-election year.The unlimited money flowing into campaign SuperPac advertising is already having an unintended consequence, at least among the Republican contenders. The Citizens United decision, which gave the right of free and anonymous political speech to corporations, has done more than give personhood to big business. It has spawned a cancer on the host. Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney, to name just two of the "beneficiaries", are busily engaged in mutual annihilation in their dueling attack ads.... and upcoming full-length negative infomercials.
As Americans' attention turns to choosing a president for the next four years and they line up behind President Obama or his Republican challenger, the percentage of independent identifiers is likely to fall this year. However, if national conditions and the political environment do not change appreciably over the course of this year, independent identification -- even if it declines -- will probably remain on the higher end of what Gallup has measured historically.
The election is still ten months away, and the complicit corporate media monsters are greedily extending their claws for the millions and billions of ad revenue coming their way courtesy of the Supremes. They too have not appeared to ponder the law of unintended consequences. They're like Bush & Co invading Iraq and being utterly befuddled by the lack of enthusiasm of the natives. How many independent voters/viewers are going to remain paying cable customers just to be invaded and tortured by nonstop political commercials? Trust me -- since the money is relentless, so too will be the election year waterboarding of the body politic.
One more reason to cut the cord that binds and gags us. Read a book, read a blog, or write your own. But above all -- Occupy!