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There are about half a million more independents now than there were just for years ago.

Third Way’s Michelle Diggles via Fox News

Read more about the surge in Independent voter registration and what it could mean for both parties in the upcoming elections in our recent products listed below.

While analysts have often looked at Independents who lean one way or the other in a single election and concluded they are simply “closet” partisans, in reality, those who label themselves Independent are much more likely to switch parties—and their votes—over time, from election to election.

Our new findings reveal that Independents are distinct even from those who say they weakly identify with the Republican or Democratic parties. While some Independents may lean toward a certain party and vote for that party’s candidate in that same electoral cycle, if you follow the same people across multiple elections, a very different pattern emerges: these leaners don’t fall with their partisan friends.

Read more in our new memo, "Leaners Don’t Fall: The Myth of the Myth of the Independent Voter.