Evangelicals in the Sunshine State

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In his article on the looming Jan. 29 Florida Republican primary in today’s New York Times, Adam Nagorney writes, “About a quarter of the Republican voters in Florida are evangelical Christians.” That seemed low to me, so I inquired of trusty fellow blogger John Green, and here’s his assessment:

It does sound low. Evangelicals make up about 25 percent of the adult population in FL and since they are very Republican, they should bulk a good bit larger in the GOP primary electorate. Interestingly, they are about the same percentage of the adult population as in Iowa. So turnout is an issue and hard to predict.

Look at it this way: If evangelicals turn out big time and make up half the voters in the primary, and Huckabee wins half of them (consistent with his previous numbers), then he’s at 25 percent of the vote. Another five percent cobbled together from non-evangelicals and–assuming good showings by Giuliani, Romney, and McCain–he wins.