The purpose of this page is to allow Independent to be used in the election template. It should not be treated as a regular article.
In party politics, the term Independent most often refers to a candidate who seeks, or an official who holds, office without being a member of or formally aligned with a political party.
Sometimes "independent" is applied more broadly to a small, peripheral party with little publicity or with only a vague platform, but which nevertheless manages to garner a significant following and even temporarily to disrupt the established party system.
Under certain circumstances, a politician might be considered independent if he belongs to a formally organized major party but the party itself is free from any major ideological grounding, especially if this contrasts with major parties in the same system which are ideologically driven.
In another context, a politician might be considered independent if he or she belongs to a party but follows a political course of action not sanctioned, or perhaps even opposed, by the party leadership.
An Independent voter might be a voter who has registered with no political party, or one who is formally registered with (and perhaps even active in) a party but is nonetheless willing to vote for other parties' candidates against his own party's under certain circumstances.