I just wanted to share a nice little graph put together by the great minds over at Pollster.com.
As you can see, GOP identification is barely staying ahead of Independents.
I am actually reminded of what I encountered while working Iowa many years ago (good heavens – have I been doing this for so long?), when Republicans controlled the legislature and 4 of 5 Congressional seats. At the time, party identification was roughly 25% Democrat, 30% Republican, and 45% Independent.
I expect those Independent numbers to keep moving upwards. In California, that bastion of progressivism and a Democratic stronghold, new voters are overwhelmingly registering as DTS – Decline To State.
This will create many new challenges for campaigns as the base of individuals that self-identify as either Democrat or Republican whither. Campaigns will have to focus on the kind of data-mining techniques done by firms like Catalist to identify Independents who identify with a candidate’s issues, because party identification simply won’t get you from A to B.