Ideology Among Independent Voter Groups
Not all independent voters are the same. Some independents lean toward a political party and are therefore called “independent leaners.” The objective here is to uncover what forces cause independent leaners to retain some level of partisanship by leaning. I hypothesize that independent leaners tend to have a stronger political ideology which causes them to lean back toward a party. Through analysis of the data from the 2004 Annenberg National Election Survey, I conclude that an independent’s level of ideological consistency does influence whether they will be an independent leaner. It is also noted that other factors such as social identities and issues preferences can increase the influence of ideology. Furthermore, candidate preferences can reduce the influence of ideology. In conclusion, the hypothesis that ideology influences independents to lean is upheld, but with the caveat that the strength of the influence is conditional on what other factors are included in the model.
Berry, Meagan (2007). Ideology Among Independent Voter Groups. Available electronically from