White evangelicals: the Republican Party at prayer

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Linoleum cut by Stephen Alcorn

Greenberg Center, Trinity College

Linoleum cut by Stephen Alcorn

Linoleum cut by Stephen Alcorn

Linoleum cut by Stephen Alcorn

By a small margin, more white evangelicals would vote for Donald Trump than for anyone else as the Republican presidential nominee, according to the latest Quinnipiac poll. At the same time, twice as many white evangelicals say they would “definitely not support” Trump than would definitely not support any other GOP wannabe. Overall, a larger number say they would definitely not support the real estate mogul than would vote for him.

As interesting as this is, it is no less interesting that these numbers are identical  to the numbers for the Republican electorate as a whole: 25 percent (vote for Trump) and 29 percent (definitely not support). In fact, across the board, white evangelicals look significantly more like Republicans in the aggregate than do Tea Partiers or, for that matter, those who identify as either very conservative or somewhat conservative or moderate/liberal.

To be sure, there are divergences here and there. White evangelicals favor Ben Carson somewhat more than the entirety of Republicans. And fewer of them say they would definitely not vote for Mike Huckabee. But these are modest survivals of an identity politics that seems to have disappeared with their overwhelming turnout for the Mormon Mitt Romney in 2012.

As of today, the Republican vote is, for all intents and purposes, the white evangelical vote.

  • Junebug

    “As of today, the Republican vote is, for all intents and purposes, the white evangelical vote.” And thence, theocratic governance.

  • drwho13

    The white evangelical vote will not be enough to get it done for the Republicans, so we’ll be OK (I hope).

  • Jack

    You’re assuming, Junebug, that evangelicalism = theocracy.

    You don’t understand the difference between the United States and Old Europe when it comes to such issues.

    You should read Tocqueville’s “Democracy in America.”

  • Jack

    You’re assuming that (1) white evangelicals are the only demographic that votes Republican — a second obvious demographic is white married Catholics and (2) that black and Hispanic evangelicals will continue voting Democratic by the same magnitude as in the past — a shaky assumption for a number of reasons.

  • Jack

    Even a modest shift of a few percentage points on the part of black and Hispanic evangelicals away from the Democrats will result in a big GOP victory next year. The refusal of the forces of left-wing extremism to stop at gay marriage, but to engage in a suicidal assault on religious freedom is a colossal blunder with lasting repercussions.

    This is the story of the hard left — it has a history of snatching defeat from the jaws of victory. Given its extremist, anti-democratic nature and its attitude of contempt for ordinary people and life, it doesn’t know when or where to stop, so it always overreaches.

  • George Nixon Shuler

    Given the Republicans’ strong racism and anti-immigrant platform a minority person voting Republican is like a chicken voting for Colonel Sanders.

  • George Nixon Shuler

    De Tocqueville is a poor example. He believed those of noble birth deserved extra privileges. He was aghast at our democratic institutions.