Monday, June 09, 2008

Mainline Protestants Shifting to Democratic Party

A poll conducted by Calvin College, a liberal arts, Christian college in Grand Rapids, Michigan, finds that mainline protestants are shifting to the Democratic Party.

Calvin College poll finds mainline Protestants shifting to Democratic Party


Mainline Protestants have shifted partisan identification
from Republican to Democratic

Evangelical Protestants:

2004: 56% Republican, 27 percent Democrat

2008: 54% Republican, 25 percent Democrat


2004: 44% Republican, 38% Democrat

2008: 37% Republican, 46% Democrat


2004: 41% Republican, 44% Democrat

2008: 38% Republican, 41% Democrat
SOURCE: Calvin College

For the first time since the beginning of Franklin Roosevelt's administration, a larger percentage of mainline Protestants call themselves Democrats than Republicans, the national survey commissioned by the Paul B. Henry Institute for the Study of Christianity and Politics at Calvin College found.

Evangelical Protestants still lean heavily toward the Republican Party and, despite initial misgivings, generally support Republican John McCain for president, although not as strongly as they did George W. Bush in 2004.

Part of the shift toward the Democrats may be because of President Bush's low approval ratings and concern about the war in Iraq, the price of gasoline and the economy, said Corwin Smidt, a political scientist at Calvin and director of the Henry Institute....

The largest shift from the Republican to the Democratic side was among centrist members of mainline Protestant denominations. While that group represents only 7 percent of the population, it could be enough to swing a tight election, Smidt said.

The survey was conducted before Hillary Clinton dropped out of the race, but it showed Obama with a lead in the general election, 43 percent to McCain's 38 with 19 percent undecided.

"How they (the undecided voters) split is going to determine who wins," Smidt said. "If they split evenly, the advantage goes to Obama. As they say, elections are won at the margins. You don't have to have massive shifts."

This is good news for liberals. Now if we could just separate hate by separating Church from State...