The Buzz

February 3, 2014

Will the circle be unbroken?

A new survey takes a look at how religious people are, by state. No surprise, at least on the presidential level: religious states vote for Republicans, non-religious states vote for Democrats.

The Buzz

The facts, faces and hum of local politics with Steve Kraske and Dave Helling

One of the most important observations about contemporary politics — at least on the presidential level — is the importance of religion in determing voters’ preferences.

Tell me if a voter goes to church, consultants say, and I’ll tell you if he or she is a Republican or Democratic vote.

There’s more evidence of that today.

Gallup is out with a poll examining “religiousness” in all 50 states. Click


for the results.

Then click


for the results of the 2012 election.

Of the top 19 most-religious states, all —

all 19 — voted for Mitt Romney. The 20th most-religious state, Virginia, supported Barack Obama


Of the 14 least-religious states, all —

all 14

— supported Obama.

Like all polls, this one might be flawed. And like all studies, it’s hard to know the difference because cause and correlation: we don’t know if religious people voted for Romney because they’re religious, or because they happen to live in states that are religious.

But it reinforces the convention wisdom: in general, religious voters lean Republican, non-religious voters lean Democratic.

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