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US Politics & Religious Affiliation (or lack there of)

Conaeolos

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Based on Pew Religion & Public Life Survey:

Predominately Democratic Liberals
Atheists, Buddhists, Hindus, Agnostics, Jewish

Predominately Democratic Conservatives/Moderates
Historically Black Protestants, Muslims

Predominately Swing Voters
Orthodox, Catholics, Mainline Protestants, Nothing in particulars

Predominately Republican Conservative
Mormons, Evangelical Protestants

Predominately apolitical
Jehovah's Witnesses


Do you think US politics is currently shaped by these religious divides? It is pretty obvious from this list that the Republican - Democratic spectrum could be approximated in relative adherence to Evangelical Protestants ideals. If you are either differ from the expected conservative/liberal reblican/democrat norm of your affliation - do you think you have a differnt view of Evangelical Protestant ideals and or less of one than those typical of your categorization?

I personally as 'Nothing in particular' would meet the predominate trend as a swing voter traditionally although as of late have been more republican leaning, but do remain fully open to non-mainline democrats.
 

Cephus

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I don't know, I'm a conservative atheist and studies suggest that about 20% of atheists are conservative, so not sure what that says.
 

Conaeolos

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I don't know, I'm a conservative atheist and studies suggest that about 20% of atheists are conservative, so not sure what that says.
The party group rarely go above ~70% and 60% in terms of liberal/conservative. I am most curious about you as an outlier- do you think you have a more positive view of evangelical ideals conpared to other liberal atheists you’ve met? Another factor I noticed is controlling for age atheists might actually be more ‘swing’ overtime as they grow - they are slightly average agreement but also swing young which may overrepresent the liberal compared to moderate categories seen when contrasting to agonistics or other affliates who rate belief in God low.
 

Cephus

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The party group rarely go above ~70% and 60% in terms of liberal/conservative. I am most curious about you as an outlier- do you think you have a more positive view of evangelical ideals conpared to other liberal atheists you’ve met? Another factor I noticed is controlling for age atheists might actually be more ‘swing’ overtime as they grow - they are slightly average agreement but also swing young which may overrepresent the liberal compared to moderate categories seen when contrasting to agonistics or other affliates who rate belief in God low.

No, because conservatism is a political ideology, not a religious one. There are far too many people who think that "conservative" describes absolutely everything in a person's life. They are wrong. It describes political views. It has nothing to do with religion. But you are right, because liberals skew young, atheism does as well. Just wait another 30 years when most of those liberals have realized how insane liberalism is and become conservative. It will represent a major shift in political identity.
 

RAMOSS

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Based on Pew Religion & Public Life Survey:

Predominately Democratic Liberals
Atheists, Buddhists, Hindus, Agnostics, Jewish

Predominately Democratic Conservatives/Moderates
Historically Black Protestants, Muslims

Predominately Swing Voters
Orthodox, Catholics, Mainline Protestants, Nothing in particulars

Predominately Republican Conservative
Mormons, Evangelical Protestants

Predominately apolitical
Jehovah's Witnesses


Do you think US politics is currently shaped by these religious divides? It is pretty obvious from this list that the Republican - Democratic spectrum could be approximated in relative adherence to Evangelical Protestants ideals. If you are either differ from the expected conservative/liberal reblican/democrat norm of your affliation - do you think you have a differnt view of Evangelical Protestant ideals and or less of one than those typical of your categorization?

I personally as 'Nothing in particular' would meet the predominate trend as a swing voter traditionally although as of late have been more republican leaning, but do remain fully open to non-mainline democrats.

I know a large number of Democratic liberals that are Christian in my local area, specifically Catholic and Episcopalian.
 

Conaeolos

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Thanks for answering one of the questions Cephus. And It would be nice if your right on the maturing of the cohort but although I do predict as it grows and balances out in age distribution we'll see many more moderates, I wouldn't bet that conservative % to grow by much. The Atheist data tends to be as I said more homogenous than average and contain other outliers such as far higher democratic liberal male representation but that may be explained by a higher portion of homosexuality. If you, by the way, happen to be an atheist male baby boomer/silent married with kids you'd actually be predicated as Moderate conservative, but then maybe you're just an outlier.

In any-case, large amount of Democratic liberals Catholic and Episcopalian do in no way change the trend line and would be very expected in those swing groups.

In regards to the sentiments that religious doesn't predict politics very well. You're kind of right. The biggest problem with religion as input in a predication algorithm is not as much it's a bad predictor(in combination with others) but that one is easily mis-categorized as it's so subjective.

For example, respondents were in this Pew study asked "do not believe in God" are many of those who said 'no' were recorded into multiple religious categories as they may still identify with another traditions or 'nothing in perticular' labels additionally false data is seen by contradictory answers such as atheists who apparently say they believe in god.

All in all, I am not actually that interested in religion as a predictor rather an outcome. I can use hard data points to get a solid political personality model ~95% accuracy. Where I am interested in introducing use religion, is in the correction for economic verse social priorities. Specifically degree of religiosity. The problem is direct measure absent type is lowing the accuracy too much. I do not want to have to an input an categorization as that too is going to reduce accuracy. The hope then is to extract out from the extensive calculated demographic 70+% accuracy of general religious category. Roughly speaking putting a baseline on a weighed scale, in the US case with Evangelical - CR, Canada case Catholic CC seems to being doing alright but still hoping to improve as we are dropping to 61.1% without a solid economic/social issue correction and I'd like to stay 89%+ roughtfully but that last more broad attempt only got to about 76.2%.
 

Logicman

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I know a large number of Democratic liberals that are Christian in my local area, specifically Catholic and Episcopalian.

"...Democratic liberals that are Christian..."

That's getting to be more and more of an oxymoron - i.e. liberal Christian.

I've yet to me even one liberal Christian who doesn't royally screw up Christianity and the scriptures.
 

RAMOSS

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"...Democratic liberals that are Christian..."

That's getting to be more and more of an oxymoron - i.e. liberal Christian.

I've yet to me even one liberal Christian who doesn't royally screw up Christianity and the scriptures.

That is because you surround yourself with people of your own political ilk, rather than people with common sense and compassion.
 

Logicman

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That is because you surround yourself with people of your own political ilk, rather than people with common sense and compassion.

That's another bird cage claim of yours.
 

Conaeolos

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That is because you surround yourself with people of your own political ilk, rather than people with common sense and compassion.
He might actually be on to something. According to the data, if we ignore party and just go by identified conservatives, liberals and moderates. From christians - agnostics. The % of liberals is strongly correlated to % of people who answered belief in God as anything but absolute. There is only two exceptions Historically Black Protestants & Muslims. I would note with Historically Black Protestants despite being overwhelemingly democrat, conservatives remains higher than liberals. In both cases, the #1 policy issue difference from the average is disproportionate large amount of people reporting believing in bigger government, at the same ratio as the amplifer found.
 

Perotista

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Based on Pew Religion & Public Life Survey:

Predominately Democratic Liberals
Atheists, Buddhists, Hindus, Agnostics, Jewish

Predominately Democratic Conservatives/Moderates
Historically Black Protestants, Muslims

Predominately Swing Voters
Orthodox, Catholics, Mainline Protestants, Nothing in particulars

Predominately Republican Conservative
Mormons, Evangelical Protestants

Predominately apolitical
Jehovah's Witnesses


Do you think US politics is currently shaped by these religious divides? It is pretty obvious from this list that the Republican - Democratic spectrum could be approximated in relative adherence to Evangelical Protestants ideals. If you are either differ from the expected conservative/liberal reblican/democrat norm of your affliation - do you think you have a differnt view of Evangelical Protestant ideals and or less of one than those typical of your categorization?

I personally as 'Nothing in particular' would meet the predominate trend as a swing voter traditionally although as of late have been more republican leaning, but do remain fully open to non-mainline democrats.

Independents or swing voters have gone back and forth. They hold no allegiance to either party. Evangelicals have become Republican mainly over the abortion fight. Catholics have been Democratic since JFK with a couple of exceptions.

Religion aside, Blacks have been voting Democratic in or close to the 90% range since LBJ regardless of religion. Asians be they Hindu, Buddhist or some other religion were predominately Republican until 1996, now are overwhelming Democratic. I don't think religion had an effect on how they voted. Whites have been predominately Republican since at least Carter, that's as far back as my records go. Again regardless of religion. Hispanics also have been Democratic since Carter with the exception of Cuban Americans.
 

RAMOSS

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That's another bird cage claim of yours.

I notice you can not show that is it false, rather you dismiss it via insult. That shows deep down , you know it to be true.
 

Good4Nothin

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There are multiple possible reasons for labeling oneself as conservative vs liberal. It mostly has to do with what you feel strongly opposed to.

If you are strongly opposed to religion, that might cause you to become a liberal. And if you are strongly opposed to atheism, that might cause you to become a conservative.

But of course there are social and financial factors in addition to religion. Religion probably became a big factor in the 1980s, when millions of Americans reacted against extreme liberalism of the 1960s.

Liberalism and socialism became somehow fused, even though liberalism had always been pro-capitalism. Maybe because both liberals and socialists were reacting against certain conservative factions.

Anyway, I think it is helpful to remember that everything in politics is mostly a reaction against something. These opposing reactions can be very complex, so people over-simplify them, which results in miscommunication.
 

Conaeolos

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Thanks for you thoughtout reply and answering my question!

Blacks have been voting Democratic in or close to the 90% range since LBJ regardless of religion.
This is a very interesting point, when taking into account doubt in God. You can pretty accurately predicate liberal % (accurate via policy prefernce) which is loosely related to democratic lean [even without having to take into account big tellers like age and gender] with two big religious exceptions both having a high black population. The conservative and moderate elements being a tad more complicated.

The three groups with high black populations are:
- Historically black protestant (94%)
- Muslims (28%)
- Jehovah's Witnesses (27%) [apolitcal]

Now, "Historically black protestants" are as expected by racial lines 80% democratic leaning & 10% no lean. With only an 11% non-absolute belief in god we predict ~12-6% liberal. We instead find 24%, with 33% moderate & 36% conservative. Again when you compare those labels to policy questions they play out well and are far more telling than party lean alone. This is similar to what we find for muslims.

We also see the policy issue that is changing the normal dynamics seems to be much higher positive view of bigger government. Also true of muslims. This is also a factor in similar comparisons like jewish and new age, in so much as, we see more non-liberal voting democrats and liberals with jews but not so with simlar new age who are much less favourable view of government despite being simlar in terms of absolute belief in God.

This is supported by the fact, the black vote got up to 90% via policy pushes by FDR & LBJ both famous for their expensive government policies.

Again regardless of religion. Hispanics also have been Democratic since Carter with the exception of Cuban Americans.
Hispanics are higher than average in Catholic, Buddhist & unaffiliated(esp religious important). Compatibles with lower might be orthodox, hindus & agnostics plus difference between unaffiliated(religious important) and unaffiliated(religious unimportant).

Orthodox compared Catholic, the biggest difference seen is again 'favourability of bigger government', which in that case is actually balanced out with more non-liberal democratic voters (orthodox) verse more liberals(catholics).

In terms of Buddhists & NAs, we again find only where there is more positive views of government a rise in non-liberal democratic lean and liberal by belief in God.

All in all. Religion(when balanced with absolute belief in God) is seeming better than race at predicting social policy preferences(and easier to determine). A related challange of my current project, but I too remain somewhat skeptical. Thanks again for the input.
 
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Perotista

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Thanks for you thoughtout reply and answering my question!


This is a very interesting point, when taking into account doubt in God. You can pretty accurately predicate liberal % (accurate via policy prefernce) which is loosely related to democratic lean [even without having to take into account big tellers like age and gender] with two big religious exceptions both having a high black population. The conservative and moderate elements being a tad more complicated.

The three groups with high black populations are:
- Historically black protestant (94%)
- Muslims (28%)
- Jehovah's Witnesses (27%) [apolitcal]

Now, "Historically black protestants" are as expected by racial lines 80% democratic leaning & 10% no lean. With only an 11% non-absolute belief in god we predict ~12-6% liberal. We instead find 24%, with 33% moderate & 36% conservative. Again when you compare those labels to policy questions they play out well and are far more telling than party lean alone. This is similar to what we find for muslims.

We also see the policy issue that is changing the normal dynamics seems to be much higher positive view of bigger government. Also true of muslims. This is also a factor in similar comparisons like jewish and new age, in so much as, we see more non-liberal voting democrats and liberals with jews but not so with simlar new age who are much less favourable view of government despite being simlar in terms of absolute belief in God.

This is supported by the fact, the black vote got up to 90% via policy pushes by FDR & LBJ both famous for their expensive government policies.


Hispanics are higher than average in Catholic, Buddhist & unaffiliated(esp religious important). Compatibles with lower might be orthodox, hindus & agnostics plus difference between unaffiliated(religious important) and unaffiliated(religious unimportant).

Orthodox compared Catholic, the biggest difference seen is again 'favourability of bigger government', which in that case is actually balanced out with more non-liberal democratic voters (orthodox) verse more liberals(catholics).

In terms of Buddhists & NAs, we again find only where there is more positive views of government a rise in non-liberal democratic lean and liberal by belief in God.

All in all. Religion(when balanced with absolute belief in God) is seeming better than race at predicting social policy preferences(and easier to determine). A related challange of my current project, but I too remain somewhat skeptical. Thanks again for the input.

Minus the religion, this might help. Scroll down and you'll see a graph with how blacks voted and party affilation.

BlackDemographics.com | POLITICS

This gives you the Hispanic breakdown, again minus religion.

Latino Voters in the 2012 Election | Pew Research Center

And an article on how Asian-Americans went from Republican to democrat with another graph.

https://www.npr.org/sections/itsall...can-voters-went-from-republican-to-democratic

I do a lot of election forecasting, purely a hobby. I do it on this site and others. My main stat I go by is party affiliation which is very dynamic instead of breaking down the electorate into all sorts of demographics to incude religion. Party Affiliation changes all the time. But using history as a guideline, history shows approximately 90% of those who affiliate or identify with either the Republican Party or Democratic Party vote for their candidates. 90% is the average. Independents, three categories, independents lean Republican, independents lean Democratic and what I term true or pure independents with no leans. Independents which lean toward one party or the other vote for the parties candidates they lean to approximately 70% of the time. True or pure independents are impossible to predict. But they make up only 10-20% of all independents.

When using party affiliation or identification, everything to include demographics are included in those three categories. Trying to figure race, age, religion, income, education, etc. just makes forecasting that much more difficult.

Here was my forecast for the 2018 midterms. If you're interested.

https://www.debatepolitics.com/blogs/comments/comment4740.html#comment4740
 
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