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Ahead of the Pennsylvania state primary on April 26, voters are coming out in droves to switch their political party affiliations.
Just this year, more than 214,000 voters in the state have switched their party, which amounts to about 3 percent of the state’s 8.4 million population, according to a report by the Associated Press (AP).
Among the 214,000 voters, about half switched to the Republican Party, something that GOP front-runner Donald Trump has credited to his candidacy platform against trade deals, foreign wars and immigration.
One-third of the voters who switched changed their party affiliation to Democrat, while about one-eighth of voters switched to a smaller party or registered as unaffiliated.
A local Pennsylvania Republican Party chairman told the AP that the massive switch to the GOP was more than likely because of Trump.
“I think it is more love than hate going on,” Lehigh County Republican Party Chairman Bill Heydt told the AP. “You know, Trump asks questions people want to hear, and nobody has been asking them or answering them either. I think it has opened a whole new window for people who are tired of the status quo.”
In the latest Real Clear Politics polling average, Trump leads the Republican pack with 34.5 percent, with Ohio Gov. John Kasich following at 20 percent. Sen. Ted Cruz currently sits at about 18.5 percent in the state’s average polling.
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