Politics

Poll: More Democrats Are Heading To The Left

| by Amanda Andrade-Rhoades

Over to the last 15 years, Democrats and left-leaning independents have started moving even further left, according to a new poll from Gallup.

In 2001, 30 percent of Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents identified as socially liberal and economically moderate or liberal. Now, that number is 47 percent. More than half of Democrats (53 percent) describe themselves as socially liberal, but in 2001 only 35 percent of the 1,024 respondents identified with those ideals.

In 2008, 39 percent identified as socially and economically liberal, meaning Hillary Clinton is facing a more left-leaning supporter base than the first time she ran.

Overall, 25 percent of respondents identified as both socially and economically liberal, but 22 percent are social liberals who are moderate on the economy. On the opposite end, just seven percent of Democrats are socially and economically conservative. Most respondents, 30 percent, had mixed ideologies on social and economic policies.

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The findings of the survey could have implications for the 2016 presidential election. Though Hillary Clinton is generally considered the front runner for the Democratic nomination, Senator Bernie Sanders, the self-described democratic socialist from Vermont, has shocked many political analysts by picking up significant support in the polls. In New Hampshire, he was just 10 points behind Clinton in the polls, Politico reported. 

Sources: Politico, Gallup Image via Denise Cross Photography/Flickr