Independent voters are 'highly prized and highly elusive'

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Everybody talking about November’s presidential election is talking about independent voters. What do they think about the candidates? Will they show up to the polls to cast their votes? Who – or what – can convince them to vote for one person or the other?

That’s where Julio Borquez comes in. A political science professor at the University of Michigan-Dearborn, he studies independent voters and finds that being a political independent is its own identity – much as being a Republican or Democrat has become a key element of people’s identities in recent years.

Borquez explains that the same attributes that make them desirable for candidates also make them very hard for campaigns to reach.

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Jeff Inglis

Politics + Society Editor

Independents may be difficult for campaigns to connect with. fcscafeine/iStock via Getty Images Plus

Independent voters are few in number, influential in close elections – and hard for campaigns to reach

Julio Borquez, University of Michigan

Both the Biden and Trump campaigns will work to mobilize their bases and maximize turnout among their supporters. But those votes alone will probably not be enough to ensure victory.

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