According to the survey of 1,800 troops released on Monday, the number of active service members self-identifying as Republican has fallen by one-third since 2004, with 9 percent of that drop-off occurring in the last year.
Military Times reporter Brendan McGarry writes: "These career-oriented officers and mid-grade and senior enlisted members are still far more conservative than liberal, but they are less likely today to identify with the GOP, the survey shows."
The shift in party affiliation among active-duty troops comes on the heels of similar findings from a survey the publication released in 2008. Infantry officer Jason Dempsey writes on a comparable shift observed among troops between 2004 and 2006:
These Military Times survey results show that support for the Republican Party among senior members of the Army, the group most likely to identify as Republican, declined significantly between 2004 and 2006 before leveling off at about 49% in 2007. Also interesting is that the data show no corresponding change in support for the Democratic Party.