Navigation Links
New study looks to define evangelicals and how they affect polling
Date:9/23/2008

The way the evangelical movement is defined has profound implications for where evangelicals fit into the political spectrum, according to a study by sociologists at Rice University and the University of Texas-Austin.

"In this election year, there is much debate over whether Sen. Obama can shave off enough evangelical votes to carry certain swing states, said Rice's D. Michael Lindsay, one of the researchers. "That depends a great deal on which poll you are looking at and, more importantly, how the survey defines the evangelical population."

For instance, the study found, "If one uses beliefs on religious issues (such as whether Satan exists) to define evangelicals, they will be noticeably more conservative in political outlook than if one uses self-classifications by the individual to define the group."

The study, "Measuring Evangelicalism: Consequences of Different Operationalization Strategies," was co-authored by Lindsay and Conrad Hackett, a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Texas-Austin, and appears in this month's Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion.

There are three distinct ways national poll organizations define evangelicals:

  1. Denominational affiliation, as is done in the General Social Survey
  2. Self-classification ("Would you call yourself an evangelical, or born-again, Christian?), as is done in surveys from the Gallup Organization and the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press
  3. Beliefs on specific religious issues, as is done by the Barna Research Group

To prove their point, Lindsay and Hackett used a single set of survey data, the 1998 General Social Survey, which included questions using all three ways of defining evangelicals.

They found that depending on how one defines an evangelical using this data, the percentage varies 10 percentage points.

Method of defining an evangelical Percentage that are Republican
Denominational affiliation 59
Self-classification 53
Beliefs on specific religious issues 63

Since this is an election year, the most interesting finding relates to the percentage of evangelicals who lean toward being or are strong Republicans.

"Evangelicals continue to be the most organized constituency of the Republican Party," Lindsay said. "However, Democrats have made unprecedented efforts to woo religious voters. They won't win the votes of all evangelicals, but in a tight election year, they don't have to -- only a few are needed. The perception over whether evangelicals are remaining loyal Republicans or are leaning Democratic depends, in great measure, on which survey is being cited. Evangelicals are the most discussed but least defined population among the American electorate."


'/>"/>

Contact: David Ruth
druth@rice.edu
713-348-6327
Rice University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. £2 million study to reveal workings of dementia genes
2. Long-term study shows effect of climate change on animal diversity
3. New study offers solution to global fisheries collapse
4. St. Jude study gives new insights into how cells accessorize their proteins
5. Duke to lead new NSF, EPA center to study the environmental implications of nanotechnology
6. NSF funds multi-university center to study environmental implications of nanotechnology
7. Study finds ATV guidelines inadequate
8. Flatworm helps researchers study stem cells and cancer
9. Study reveals how viruses collectively decide the fate of a bacterial cell
10. UC Riverside botanist to study role of plants in southern Californias drought
11. Book breaks new ground in the study of economics and forest threats management
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/22/2016)... 2016 On Monday, the Department of Homeland ... share solutions for the Biometric Exit Program. The Request ... Protection (CBP), explains that CBP intends to add biometrics ... the United States , in order to deter ... Logo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160622/382209LOGO ...
(Date:6/9/2016)...  Perkotek an innovation leader in attendance control systems is proud to announce the ... employers to make sure the right employees are actually signing in, and to even ... ... ... ...
(Date:6/2/2016)... , June 2, 2016   The Weather Company , ... Watson Ads, an industry-first capability in which consumers will be ... able to ask questions via voice or text and receive ... Marketers have long sought an advertising ... that can be personal, relevant and valuable; and can scale ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... ... Parallel 6 , the leading software as a service (SaaS) provider ... Patient Encounter CONSULT module which enables both audio and video telemedicine communication between the ... the CONSULT module, patients and physicians can schedule a face to face virtual patient ...
(Date:6/27/2016)...   Ginkgo Bioworks , a leading organism ... today awarded as one of the World Economic ... most innovative companies. Ginkgo Bioworks is engineering biology ... world in the nutrition, health and consumer goods ... customers including Fortune 500 companies to design microbes ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... Raleigh, NC (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... find the most commonly-identified miRNAs in people with peritoneal or pleural mesothelioma. Their findings ... here to read it now. , Diagnostic biomarkers are signposts in the blood, ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... - FACIT has announced the creation of a ... Propellon Therapeutics Inc. ("Propellon" or "the Company"), to ... of first-in-class WDR5 inhibitors for the treatment of ... an exciting class of therapies, possessing the potential ... patients. Substantial advances have been achieved with the ...
Breaking Biology Technology: