It Don’t Mean a Thing if It Ain’t Got That Swing: In Search of the Elusive Swing Voter

… Evidence from a 2008-2009 panel survey conducted by the American National Election Studies shows that the proportion of voters who actually shift their preference during the course of a presidential campaign is much smaller than the proportion who claim to be uncertain about their choice. …

Another very common assumption about the American electorate is that independents are very likely to be swing voters. Indeed, the terms independent and swing voter are often used interchangeably. However, evidence from the ANES 2008-2009 panel survey indicates that only a small minority of independents are actually open to persuasion during the presidential campaign. [cont.]

Alan Abramowitz, Emory U.