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Most Americans Registered Will Vote Straight Ticket, Poll Shows

The latest Pew Research Center survey released Wednesday on the U.S. election finds that an overwhelming majority of registered voters plan to vote only for Republicans or only for Democrats on Election Day.

(CN) — The latest Pew Research Center survey released Wednesday on the U.S. election finds that an overwhelming majority of registered voters plan to vote only for Republicans or only for Democrats on Election Day.

The researchers report that only 4% of those registered voters said they plan to vote a split ticket — a ballot cast for a mix of candidates from both parties — when they go to the polls ahead of the 2020 election. That’s about as many as had said the same thing in advance of the 2016 election.

The nonprofit, nonpartisan polling group collected responses from 10,543 registered voters in states with a contested seat in the U.S. Senate. Panelists answered the questions via an online survey.

A larger minority of the voting populace, 7%, say they’ll vote for a third-party candidate.

This goes some way in explaining why states whose voters choose a Democrat senator typically also pick the Democratic presidential candidate, and vice versa for states that elect a Republican senator.

Straight-ticket voting was the norm within all the single demographics the Pew researchers asked about: regardless of a voter’s gender, race, age generation and educational attainment, the voter was likely voting straight red or blue in the 2020 presidential election.

The closest group to upsetting this trend were among Asian American respondents, 9% of whom said they’d vote a split ticket. A notable 13% of Gen Z respondents said they planned not to vote straight Republican or Democrat, but preferred another third-party candidate for president.

“Voters who support minor-party candidates for president are about evenly divided in their vote for the House of Representatives (29% support the Democrat and 31% support the Republican),” the study’s authors write.

Only 22% of registered Gen Z voters and 25% of millennial voters plan to cast a straight Republican ballot, according to the poll.

Of registered voters who received just a high school diploma or did not complete high school, 35% said they’d vote straight Democrat; this number jumps to 54% among voters who graduated with at least a bachelor’s degree.

On the reverse, 40% of high school-educated voters said they’ll vote straight Republican, while that number drops to only 29% when only voters with a college degree are considered.

The Pew survey told respondents the names of the Senate candidates on the ballot in their districts as well as the candidates’ party affiliation. High-profile races in battleground states such as Colorado, Texas and Arizona could flip control of the Senate from red to blue come 2021.

A meaningful 11% of respondents indicated that they did not know who they would support in their state’s congressional elections.

The survey was conducted between Sept. 30 and Oct. 5, concluding just more than one week prior to the onset of early voting.

A survey conducted over a similar timespan found that most U.S. voters believe this election is of historic importance, and found that most voters preferred Biden on the issues and in terms of his personality compared to Trump.

The survey’s respondents were pulled from Pew’s American Trends Panel, whose more than 13,000 active participants provide the “principal source of data for U.S. public opinion research,” according to the organization. 

Six respondents were removed from the results, as they straightlined their answers or refused to answer nearly all of the questions

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