The Libertarian Vote
Cato Institute Policy Analysis Series No. 580
28 Pages Posted: 2 Apr 2007
Date Written: October 18, 2006
Conventional wisdom holds that the United States is a country nearly evenly divided between two political ideologies: liberal vs. conservative, red state vs. blue state. Our study of voter and public polling data suggests this view is incorrect; a significant portion of voters can be classified as neither liberal nor conservative. In particular, we find that some 13 percent of voting-age Americans can be considered libertarian, tending to agree with conservatives on economic issues and with liberals on many social issues. What's more, these libertarian voters are increasingly in play for both parties, and they represent a bloc that is large enough to swing national elections.
Keywords: Cato, David Boaz, David Kirby, PA 580, political ideologies, swing voters, liberal, conservative, polling data, libertarian voting, libertarian interests, national elections
JEL Classification: D72
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation