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Poll: More Americans identify as Republicans than Democrats

The parties flipped in popularity as President Biden's approval rating sank

More Americans now identify as Republicans
Más estadounidenses se identificaron como republicanos | Shutterstock

January 18, 2022 1:21pm

Updated: January 18, 2022 6:35pm

More Americans identified as a Republican than a Democrat at the end of 2021, giving the GOP the largest advantage in more than 25 years, according to a new Gallup poll.

During the first quarter of 2021, 49% of Americans identified with the Democratic Party, compared to 40% who identified with the Republican Party. However, such allegiance flipped by the end of the year – with 47% saying they were Republicans and 42% saying they were Democrats.

Overall in 2021, most Americans (42%) identified as independents, which has remained the United States' largest political affiliation for the past three decades.

The poll was released Sunday, as voters go to the polls in November to decide whether Democrats or Republicans will control the House and Senate and with Democratic President Biden's approval rating in his first year having steadily dropped while his disapproval rating increased.

Republican support markedly increased during the third quarter of 2021, when 44% identified as Republican, while 45% identified as Democrat. 

During that time, at the end of August, the pandemic showed no signs of slowing and the country's military withdraw from Afghanistan ended with the death of 13 service members, and Biden's disapproval ratings became higher than his approval ratings.

The gap has widened ever since. Biden now has a roughly 52.1% disapproval rating vs. 42.5% approval rating, according to FiveThirtyEight.

The GOP's nine-point over Democrats during 2021 is one of the largest increases measured by Gallup since starting in 1991.

Americans on average are more likely to identify as Democrats than Republicans, but by the fourth quarter of 2021, the GOP had "an advantage over Democrats larger than any they had achieved in more than 25 years," Gallup states.