217 readers were asked to comment on Radnor Reports. Here’s what they said:

  • Sixty-one had mostly positive things to say while 128 were critical of something (such as the source of one or more articles or the research firm cited – even the Radnor logo). The remainder had suggestions or were neutral.
  • Most interesting: Readers seem to be slipping away from the two major political parties. More readers this year claimed to be Independents than claimed to support either major party.
  • In 2012, readers saying they were Democrats led Republicans by a 41% to 34% margin with Independents at 22%. Today, 46% claim to be Independents. Democrats have slipped to 32%. Republicans have tanked to 18%. 
  • The sample size is too small to forecast election results but does show the mood of long-time readers of Radnor Reports. In the past, readers have been a good indication of election trends and results. In fact, readers have correctly predicted the winning party in the 2012, 2014, 2016 and 2018 elections.

Here are several comments from these long-time readers (spelling errors included):

  • U are stupid! Stupid! How can u think that Pres Trump is not 1 of the best presidents ever? Stupid! (Radnor concedes that President Trump has loyal supporters. But one of the best presidents ever? Sorry, we disagree.)
  • You criticize the President’s intelligence? Your IQ is in the minus range. (We have not commented on President Trump’s intelligence. We did say he shows signs of narcissism.)
  •  I don’t know why I read this trash. (Nor do we, but we do know that you have been reading it and commenting on Radnor Reports since 2009.)
  • I’m outa here!!! Goodby!!! (We notice that you wrote something similar last year
  • – !!! and all.)
  • You are just another liberal (expletive deleted).
  • Where do you have the right to put this junk on the net? (Anyone can put anything they want on the Internet. That is both a positive and a negative attribute of the Internet. The article that upset the reader is from the Wall Street Journal.)
  • I didn’t like it, but I learned something again. That’s why I follow this blog.  (Thank you!) 

A major change began to show up in readers’ comments early last year and continued into the first quarter of this year. The change? More comments relate to President Trump.

  • The combination of anger and – less often – concern shown by supporters of President Trump is nearly matched by the increase in uncomplimentary comments by those who do not like President Trump, his personality or his policies.
  • People identifying their political leaning are now using the term “conservative” more than “Republican.” The word “moderate” is seldom used anymore.
  • Many who are identifying others’ political leanings use “liberal” in the pejorative sense. The word “Communist” was used less this year.
  • President Trump’s supporters often seem to believe that those who do not like the president’s policies – or the way he articulates them – are “liberals,” “Communists” or worse.

Radnor Reports has asked some of our readers the same question every few years. Here are the current results (310 interviews) and some past results:

Question: Do you consider yourself a Democrat, Independent or Republican?

  •  2012 – Democrat=41%, Independent=22, Republican=34, No answer or other=3%
  •  2014 – Democrat=36%, Independent=30, Republican=28, No answer or other=6%
  •  2016 – Democrat=28%, Independent=33, Republican=35, No answer or other=5%
  •  2018 – Democrat=32%, Independent=41, Republican=24, No answer or other=3%
  •  2020 – Democrat=32%, Independent=46, Republican=18, No answer or other=4%

The 2012 through 2018 research was conducted in April and/or May. The 2020 research was conducted in May.

  • Those who identify themselves as Independents have increased from 22% to 46% of all voters.
  • Republicans have declined from a high of 35% in 2016 to 18% now.
  • Democrats have slipped from 41% in 2012 to 32% in 2020.

Focus group results seem to indicate that voters may be losing their trust in the two major political parties. The voters who formerly claimed to be most committed to a party are less likely to make that claim now. Republican are more likely than Democrats to be less committed today.

Next, take those who say they are “centrist” or “moderate” Republicans:

  • 36% of those “centrists” and “moderates” are the very Republicans who also say that they could or are likely to vote for a Democrat or not vote at all in the November election. They are a sign of the unhappiness and confusion within the GOP.
  • Among Democrats, 6% say that if they vote this year, they could or are likely to vote for a Republican.

Who is most likely to vote in November?

  • 92% of Republicans claim that they are certain to vote in November (compared with 97% in 2016 and 90% in 2018).
  • 95% of Democrats claim that they are certain to vote in November (compared with 93% in 2016 and 98% in 2018).
  • 96% of Independents claim that they are certain to vote in November (compared with 81% in 2016 and 95% in 2018).

November will not sort out the confusion.

 

 

 

About Radnor Reports

Ken Feltman is past-president of the International Association of Political Consultants and the American League of Lobbyists. He is retired chairman of Radnor Inc., an international political consulting and government relations firm in Washington, D.C. Known as a coalition builder, he has participated in election campaigns and legislative efforts in the United States and several other countries.
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