70% of #OWS Supporters are Politically Independent

NEW YORK–(ENEWSPF)–October 19, 2011.  Two weeks ago we conducted an anonymous poll on this website to learn more about our visitors. We asked Héctor R. Cordero-Guzmán Ph.D, sociologist of the City University of New York to look at the data, which he analyzed to create an original academic paper titled “Mainstream Support for a Mainstream Movement“.

His analysis shows that the Occupy Wall Street movement is heavily supported by a diverse group of individuals and that “the 99% movement comes from and looks like the 99%.” Among the most telling of his findings is that 70.3% of respondents identified as politically independent.

Dr. Cordero-Guzmán’s findings strongly reinforce what we’ve known all along: Occupy Wall Street is a post-political movement representing something far greater than failed party politics. We are a movement of people empowerment, a collective realization that we ourselves have the power to create change from the bottom-up, because we don’t need Wall Street and we don’t need politicians.

Since our humble beginning a few short weeks ago, we’ve helped inspire people around the world to organize democratic assemblies in their own communities to take back public spaces, meet basic needs, make their own demands, and begin building a better world today.

Below is Dr. Cordero-Guzmán’s executive summary of his findings along with a link to his full academic paper.

The Occupy Wall Street movement has galvanized the attention of the world by organizing the largest demonstrations in this country as a response to the Great Recession caused by our financial and political leaders. Data from a survey of 1,619 respondents from a survey placed on suggests that there is a huge undercurrent of mainstream dissatisfaction with traditional political party affiliations as well a huge amount of support for radical change in the United States of America.

  • 92.5% of respondents either somewhat or strongly supported the protests with most respondents indicating strong support.

  • 1/4th of the sample (or 24.2%) participated in the Occupy Wall Street protests as of October 5, 2011.

  • 91.8% of the sample thinks that the Occupy Wall Street Protests will continue to grow.

In terms of demographic characteristics of the sample, we found that,

  • 64.2% of respondents were younger than 34 years of age.

  • While the sample is relatively young, one in three respondents is older than 35 and one in five respondents is 45 and older.

  • 7.9% of respondents have a high school degree or less.

  • 92.1% of the sample has some college, a college degree, or a graduate degree.

  • 27.4% have some college (but no degree), 35% have a college degree, 8.2% have some graduate school (but no degree), and close to 21.5% have a graduate school degree.

  • This is a highly educated sample.

  • 26.7% of respondents were enrolled in school and 73.3% were not enrolled in school.

  • 50.4% were employed full-time and an additional 20.4% were employed part-time.

  • 13.1% of the sample are unemployed.

  • 2.6% of respondents were retired, 1.3% disabled, 2.6% homemakers and 9.7% are full-time students.

  • 47.5% of the sample earns less than $24,999 dollars a year and another quarter (24%) earn between $25,000 and $49,999 per year.

  • 71.5% of the sample earns less than $50,000 per year.

  • 15.4% of the sample earned between $50,000 and $74,999.

  • The remainder 13% of the sample earn over $75,000 with close to 2% earning over $150,000 per year.

  • 27.3% of respondents considered themselves Democrats, another 2.4% said they were Republican.

  • Interestingly, a very large proportion of the sample, close to 70.3%, considered themselves Independents.

  • 66.4% in the sample agree somewhat or strongly that they regularly use Facebook.

  • 28.9% in the sample agree somewhat or strongly that they regularly use Twitter.

  • 73.9% in the sample agree somewhat or strongly that they regularly use YouTube.

  • Our data suggest that the 99% movement comes from and looks like the 99%.

Héctor R. Cordero-Guzmán, Ph.D.

Full Paper: Mainstream Support for a Mainstream Movement (PDF)