825,000 voters abandoned the Democratic Party since Obama won in 2008. Are you surprised?
(ABC) President Obama’s uphill battle to re-election is getting steeper.
A report released today by the centrist think-tank Third Way showed that more than 825,000 voters in eight key battleground states have fled the Democratic Party since Obama won election in 2008.
In eight states that will be must-wins in 2012 – Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina and Pennsylvania – Democrats lost 5.4 percent of their registered voters while Republicans lost 3.1 percent. The number of independent voters in those states jumped 3.4 percent.
There will likely be more independent voters in the upcoming election than there has been in nearly 50 years, according to the report. But Jarding argues that could actually help Obama, if he plays his cards right.
Obama snagged 52 percent of unaffiliated voters in 2008, but those independents flocked to Republicans in the 2010 midterms with 56 percent opting for a GOP candidate. Between 2008 and 2010, there was a 27-point shift in which party independents chose.
“Independent voters have been the deciding factor in the last two major elections,” said Omar Ali, spokesman for IndependentVoting.org. “And they are going to, more than likely, determine the 2012 presidential election.”
“People are very, very disillusioned and the danger for Obama is when people are disillusioned and when they are hurting they tend to throw the guy in power out,” said Steven Jarding, a Harvard public policy professor and Democratic campaign strategist. “If Obama can’t turn out the vote that he did in 2008, he’s in trouble.”