Around 1.7 million American voters decided to switch their political party affiliation over the past year. According to voter registration data analyzed by the Associated Press, two-thirds of those voters switched from the Democratic Party to the Republican Party, leaving Democrats scrambling ahead of the crucial midterm elections in November.
The data showed that around one million people switched to the Republican Party while around 630,000 decided to register as Democrats.
The shift has been seen in large and medium-sized cities across the country, including Denver, Atlanta, Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Harrisburg, Raleigh, Augusta, and Des Moines. Suburban voters, who helped propel President Joe Biden to victory in 2020 are also leaving the Democratic Party amid rising inflation and gas prices, and the party's failure to pass any substantial legislation to address many of the issues facing the country.
Some analysts say that the shift also has to do with the perception that the Democrats are focused more on defeating the Republicans than campaigning on their own ideas.
“But that doesn’t mean that they’re ready to vote against those lawmakers either. Frankly, they’re skeptical of both options that they have,” Emily Seidel, who leads the organization Americans for Prosperity, told the AP. “The lesson here: Candidates have to make their case, they have to give voters something to be for, not just something to be against.”
RNC Chair Ronna McDaniel told the AP that a red wave is coming in November and could last for years to come.
“Biden and Democrats are woefully out of touch with the American people, and that’s why voters are flocking to the Republican Party in droves," she said.