Saturday, January 31, 2009

Gallup Poll: Dems nearly equal Republicans in Kansas

Gallup has just released some poll results that should be extremely encouraging to Kansas Democrats. Just two percent more of Kansas adults identify themselves as Republicans than as Democrats.

Democrats 41.4%
Republicans 43.4%

Kansas Jayhawk has a good take on what these figures mean

there are potentially huge numbers of registered Republicans in this state who aren't really Republicans at all, who, instead, think of themselves as- and vote as- Democrats. Or that two-thirds of the unaffiliated voters in Kansas are really secret Democrats. Or something.

What this number really does tell members of both political parties in Kansas is that the Democratic Party has huge potential for registration growth- remarkable, remarkable potential- because the people of this state identify with the Democrats almost exactly as often as they do the Republicans. All it takes for a Democrat to capitalize on that fact and win is a smart campaign based on good ideas...

Here's the method behind Gallup's poll.

In 2008, Gallup interviewed more than 350,000 U.S. adults as part of Gallup Poll Daily tracking. That includes interviews with 1,000 or more residents of every U.S. state except Wyoming (885) and North Dakota (953), as well as the District of Columbia (689). There were more than 15,000 interviews conducted with residents of California, New York, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Florida.

This large data set provides the unique ability to give reliable estimates of state-level characteristics for 2008. Each sample of state residents was weighted by demographic characteristics to ensure it is representative of the state's population.

In order to rank the states on partisanship, Gallup analyzes "leaned" party identification by state. This measure adds partisan-leaning independents to the percentage who identify with either of the parties. Thus, the Republican total includes Republican identifiers and independents who lean Republican, and the Democratic total likewise includes Democratic identifiers and independents who lean Democratic.

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