New Polls Rock Foundations of Conservatism
Our vice presidential debate is in the history books. All of the judges are holding up score cards and reviews are decidedly mixed. I saw a clear win for Biden. VP debates hardly ever matter, though, and that’s probably true here.
But two recent polls reveal how the positions staked out by each VP candidate might play in the minds of voters. In the end, Biden’s win looks less important than the way his positions will be received by voters. And in that, new polls by Pew and Gallup – taken together – look good for Democrats.
Simply put, our society is inclined to be less coercively conservative and no longer dominantly Christian. We’re becoming more tolerant even if we’re not quite ready to call that “more liberal.” That doesn’t bode well for a candidate who wants to use government to enforce social doctrine or limit choices, both mainstays of conservative orthodoxy
The recent Pew poll upends the idea that we’re a “Christian nation.” For the first time in Pew polling, those describing themselves as protestant dropped below half. Today, approaching half of Americans are neither Protestant nor Catholic. In just five years, those who describe themselves as non-religiously affiliated grew from 15 percent to 20 percent – one in five Americans. But here are the big takeaways: Of all Americans, more than half believe that religions are too concerned with amassing wealth and promoting rules. Almost half say religions are too concerned with politics.
Together, these beliefs reveal an increasing willingness to apply a crap-detector test to pulpit politics. Gallup polling recently found that that only 44% of Americans have confidence in organized religions, a decline of almost 25 points from its high in 1975. In more assumption shattering news researchers also reported,Continued on the next page