New Poll: Religion in the 2008 Election

A poll released today by Public Religion Research and sponsored by a coalition of progressive, faith-based organizations has some surprises about the role faith played in the 2008 presidential election and how faith voters are approaching the country’s challenges. Not surprisingly, religious voters, like all voters generally, identified the economy as their number one issue. What is interesting is that other social concerns such as abortion and same-sex marriage were far down on the list of voter’s preoccupations. When asked to rank the importance of various issues in their vote, respondents identified first, the economy (70%), followed by Iraq (35%), health care (31%), terrorism (19%), abortion (14%) and same-sex marriage (6%). 

Advertisement

The poll also found that nearly twice as many Catholics think the best way to ensure peace is through diplomacy rather than military strength (61% vs. 32%), much like the general population (61% vs. 29%). White evangelicals split evenly over whether diplomacy or military strength is the best way to ensure peace (43% each). Lastly, there is an interesting piece of data for those conducting a post-mortem on the Palin vice-presidential pick: Palin’s nomination increased support among fewer than one-third of white evangelicals (30%), and decreased support among every other religious group and political independents. Among white evangelicals, a majority (54%) say her selection didn’t affect their support for McCain, and an additional 14% say her selection made them less likely to support McCain.

The full results can be found here.

Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.

Advertisement

The latest from america

 10.17.2018 Pope Francis greets Cardinal Blase J. Cupich of Chicago before a session of the Synod of Bishops on young people, the faith and vocational discernment at the Vatican Oct. 16. (CNS photo/Vatican Media)
“We take people where they are, walking with them, moving forward,” Cardinal Blase Cupich said.
Michael J. O’LoughlinOctober 20, 2018
Catherine Pakaluk, who currently teaches at the Catholic University of America and holds a Ph.D. in Economics from Harvard University, describes her tweet to Mr. Macron as “spirited” and “playful.”
Emma Winters October 19, 2018
A new proposal from the Department of Homeland Security could make it much more difficult for legal immigrants to get green cards in the United States. But even before its implementation, the proposal has led immigrants to avoid receiving public benefits.
J.D. Long-GarcíaOctober 19, 2018
 Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano, then nuncio to the United States, and then-Cardinal Theodore E. McCarrick of Washington, are seen in a combination photo during the beatification Mass of Blessed Miriam Teresa Demjanovich at the Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart in Newark, N.J., Oct. 4, 2014. (CNS photo/Gregory A. Shemitz)
In this third letter Archbishop Viganò no longer insists, as he did so forcefully in his first letter, that the restrictions that he claimed Benedict XVI had imposed on Archbishop McCarrick—one he alleges that Pope Francis later lifted—can be understood as “sanctions.”
Gerard O’ConnellOctober 19, 2018