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What the rise of the unaffiliated voter means for North Carolina politics


Last month marked a noteworthy shift in North Carolina politics: There are now more unaffiliated voters than registered Democrats or Republicans in the state.

They now account for roughly 2.5 million of North Carolina’s 7.2 million voters.

Some commons reasons voters choose to be unaffiliated is because they say neither party represents their values or because they intend to vote in whichever primary they want.

In addition to local and statewide elections, North Carolina is also a major player on the national stage. The choices of unaffiliated voters in the 2022 midterms and the 2024 presidential election may have an impact on the entire country.

We’re joined by political experts to determine what’s behind the surge in unaffiliated voters and what it means for North Carolina and beyond.


Michael Bitzer, chair of political science, professor of politics and history at Catawba College

Whitney Ross Manzo, associate professor of political science at Meredith College

Jim Morrill, former politics reporter for The Charlotte Observer, co-host of WFAE's Inside Politics: Election 2022 podcast

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Jesse Steinmetz is Producer of Charlotte Talks with Mike Collins. Before joining WFAE in 2019, he was an intern at WNPR in Hartford, Connecticut and hosted a show at Eastern Connecticut State University.