Wednesday, November 2, 2022

Latest PRRI American Values Survey: White Evangelicals, the GOP Base, Continue to Be Outliers

Jeff Brumley notes that, once again, white evangelicals turn out to be outliers on beliefs about race and American history in PRRI's latest American Values Survey. Brumley counts the ways:

White evangelicals are much more likely than other U.S. adults to believe white Americans face as much discrimination as Blacks and other people of color, Public Religion Research Institute found in its recently released 2022 American Values Survey. ... “Less than half of other Christians (44%), non-Christian religious Americans (43%) and Hispanic Catholics (36%) agreed. Agreement is lowest among Black Protestants, with 12% agreeing with the statement and 85% disagreeing.”  


Most Americans (58%) agree that Blacks are more likely to receive the death penalty for the same crimes committed by whites, although Republicans (31%) and white evangelical Protestants (33%) were much less likely to hold that view. 

Then there's this:

Responses were similar when survey participants were asked if they agreed or disagreed with the statement that “white supremacy is still a major problem in the United States today.”

Most Americans (58%) said yes, including 86% of Democrats, 60% of independents but only 30% of Republicans.

“White evangelical Protestants (33%) are least likely to agree, and less than half of other Christians (49%) agree as well. Majorities of all other religious groups agree that white supremacy remains a problem, including Black Protestants (88%), Hispanic Catholics (73%), those affiliated with non-Christian religions (72%), those unaffiliated with any religious tradition (71%), and white mainline Protestants (54%), as well as half of white Catholics (50%).”

Jennifer Rubin also comments on PRRI's American Values Survey and what it tells us, noting, "If today’s GOP baffles you, consider what motivates its base":

For answers, turn to the Public Religion Research Institute’s American Values Survey, which provides insight into the beliefs of White evangelical Christians, who make up the core of the GOP. It reveals a lot about what they think and why they vote the way they do.

A striking 71 percent of these voters think the country has gone downhill since the 1950s (when women were excluded from most professions, Black Americans faced barriers to voting, 50 million Americans still used outhouses and only about 5 percent of Americans were college-educated). Because White Protestant evangelicals make up such a large share of the GOP, that means 66 percent of Republicans want to go back to the time of “Leave It to Beaver.”

Half of White evangelical Protestants also think God intended America to be the promised land. Nearly two-thirds say immigrants are a threat, and 61 percent say “society has become too soft and feminine.” And they are the only discrete religious group polled to support overturning Roe v. Wade.

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