The results of a new exit poll commissioned by Faith in Public Life and conducted by Zogby International show that Iraq was the top moral issue influencing voters in the mid-term elections and that most Americans consider poverty and greed the most urgent moral problems in our culture. Voters who heard from faith groups urging people to vote on ‘kitchen table’ moral issues like peace in Iraq and poverty responded much more favorably than voters who heard from faith groups urging people to vote on issues like abortion, same-sex marriage and stem cell research.
“Now secular liberals and culturally conservative Muslims are united in their intense opposition to Bush’s policies at home and abroad, especially in the Middle East. And it should be no surprise that an African American like Ellison has emerged as a key broker in this coalition. About one-fourth to one-third of all American Muslims are African Americans. These are not “black Muslim” followers of Louis Farrakhan, but orthodox Sunni Muslims, accepted as such by their brethren from traditionally Muslim societies.”
Perhaps America is better off when we work together against injustice. Because sometimes when we work together for the common good, those old terms just don’t make sense.
“Two Jews, a Hindu, and a born-again Christian, disillusioned after the 2004 election and troubled by the idea that their nation is bitterly divided over morality, set out to investigate the power of evangelical Christianity in American political life.”
“From Megachurches in Texas, to Music Festivals in New Hampshire to MTV protests in New York, they discover that the fanaticism characterized in the mainstream media tells only one side of a diverse and fascinating story of religion and politics.”
Remember the God gap? That supposedly unbridgable chasm that separated people of faith from the Democratic Party. Well poll numbers out of last night’s elections seem to show that this Religious Right-inspired myth has run into the hard truth of voter preference.
There will be numbers galore to crunch in the weeks ahead, but the early ones all show that the supposedly vast God gap is all but GONE. Amy Sullivan already has a piece up on this on the New Republic. Check out some of the numbers that we’ve noticed here at FPL:
All numbers are based on National Election Pool Exit Polls
Figures are based on available information. Many states do not have exit poll information for evangelicals, for example, from past elections. Please verify all numbers before using!
Given the nationalized nature of the 2006 elections, we first compare 2006 national numbers to 2004 Presidential numbers. Second, we compare 2006 national numbers to 2004 National House.
Dramatic shift of Catholic vote
- Catholic Shift, Dems win Catholic vote — 16-point shift nationally from Bush’s numbers (R52/D47) in 2004 to 55D/44R; 12-point swing nationally from 2004 National House (49D/50R).
Dramatic shift of evangelical vote
- White Evangelical Shift from 2004 President — 15-point swing nationally from Bush’s numbers in 2004 (D21/R78) to D28/R70; 7-point swing nationally from 2004 National House (25D/74R)
o Evangelicals did show up — 24% this year compared to 23% of electorate in 2004.
Shift among voters who attend religious services once a week
- 10-point shift nationally among voters who attend religious services once a week (2004 Presidential (58R/41D), up to near parity D46/R53; 8-point shift nationally from 2004 National House D42/R57.
Minimum Wage passed by 31-point average across 6 states
- All 6 Minimum Wage ballot initiatives passed by avg of 31 points
- Declining enthusiasm for their issues: First defeat of a same-sex marriage ban: AZ. Passed in 5 other states, but by an avg of 12-points less than 35-point average of 2004, with 3 more moderate states all under 10 points. NOTE: SD abortion ban failed.
- 42-point Catholic shift from Mike DeWine (R) in 2000 to those voting for Sherrod Brown (D) in 2006. There was also a 19-point swing to the Democrats compared to President Bush’s 11-point margin on the Catholic vote in 2004.
- 31-point Protestant/Christian shift from Mike DeWine (R) in 2000 to Sherrod Brown (D) in 2006. This was also a 16-point swing from President Bush’s 12-point edge with Protestant voters in 2004.
- 32-point White Protestant/Christian shift from Mike DeWine (R) in 2000 to Sherrod Brown (D) in 2006.
- 31-point shift among voters who attend religious services once a week from Mike DeWine (R) in 2000 to Sherrod Brown (D). This was also a 24-point swing from President Bush’s 28-point edge with voter who attend religious services weekly in 2004.
- 25-point Catholic shift from Rick Santorum (R) in 2000 to Bob Casey, Jr. (D) in 2006 and swing of 21 points from President Bush’s 2-point deficit on the Catholic vote in 2004.
- 22-point shift among voters who attend religious services once a week to Casey from Santorum’s margin in 2000; 14-point shift to Casey from Bush’s margin in 2004.
- 16-point Catholic shift from George Allen (R) in 2000 to Jim Webb (D) in 2006, and 25 points from President Bush in 2004.
- 14-point shift among voters who attend religious services once a week to Jim Webb from George Allen’s margin in 2000; 5 point shift to Webb from Bush in 2004.
- 11-point Catholic shift from Conrad Burns (R) in 2000 to Tester in 2006. A 15-point shift from President Bush’s numbers in 2004.
- 13-point white evangelical shift for Tester from President Bush’s numbers in 2004.