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48 Percent of Democrats Now Call Themselves Liberal

48 Percent of Democrats Now Call Themselves Liberal
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Friday, 22 September 2017 04:17 PM Current | Bio | Archive

Forty-eight percent (48 percent) of Democrats now call themselves liberal, a 20-point increase from the beginning of the century when that figure was 28 percent.[1]

At the same time, the number of self-described conservatives in the Democratic Party has fallen from 23 percent in 2000 to 13 percent today. This data was provided by the Pew Research Center and is based on registered voters who are Democrats or independents who lean Democratic.

Putting the numbers in context highlights a significant change in the party over the past 17 years. When the 21st century began, there were nearly as many conservatives (23 percent) as liberals (28 percent) in the Democratic Party. Now, however, liberals outnumber conservative in the party by a three-to-one margin (48 percent to 15 percent).

The number of Democrats considering themselves liberal jumped following the Republican midterm victories in 2010 and 2014. It jumped again following the 2016 presidential election.

While there was also a shift in the Republican Party, it is not nearly as dramatic. In 2000, 57 percent of Republicans considered themselves conservative. That number first edged over 60% following the election of Barack Obama and is at 65 percent today.[2]

These numbers suggest that the growing gap between the parties results more from the Democrats moving left than from the Republicans moving right.

Footnotes:

  1. Pew Research Center, "Democratic voters are increasingly likely to call their views liberal," September 7, 2017
  2. Pew Research Center data provided by email to Scott Rasmussen on September 20, 2017

Each weekday, Scott Rasmussen’s Number of the Day explores interesting and newsworthy topics at the intersection of culture, politics, and technology. Columns published on Ballotpedia reflect the views of the author.

Scott Rasmussen is a Senior Fellow for the Study of Self-Governance at the King’s College in New York and an Editor-At-Large for Ballotpedia, the Encyclopedia of American Politics. His most recent book, "Politics Has Failed: America Will Not," was published by the Sutherland Institute in May.To read more of his reports — Click Here Now.

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Forty-eight percent (48 percent) of Democrats now call themselves liberal, a 20-point increase from the beginning of the century when that figure was 28 percent.
democrats, liberal, conservative, polling
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2017-17-22
Friday, 22 September 2017 04:17 PM
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