What Effect Does Education Have on Political Affiliation?

Jun 28th, 2013 | Category: Politics

 A recent poll from the Media and Public Opinion (MPO) Research Group has found patterns of political party identification when analyzed with respondents’ highest level of education completed.

The levels of education* that identify most strongly with the Democratic party are the Bachelors and community college options, with only a 1.5% difference between the two. The Democratic party was least popular among those who had no college education. The Republican party shows a pattern inverse to Democratic identification, where its percentage of registration is highest with respondents who had High School degrees, with about a 4% to 6% lead above both college education levels.  Those with either a Bachelors or community college experience are most likely to identify as Independents. The amount of Independents who had only a high school education was less than half of the percentages within both college education levels.

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The patterns shown from this poll suggest that college education has a noticeable effect on influencing the public to be more likely to identify with neither the Democratic or Republican parties, and identify instead as Independent.  Additionally, college education appears to be an indicator of being slightly more likely to register Democratic.

This data was based on a survey of 501 people over the month of May 2013. The margin of error is 4.38%.

By Trent Wilburn

*Since the amount of respondents who claimed to have graduate degrees was too small a percentage to use in this analysis, this will focus on the American public that has either a high school, community college or a Bachelors degree.