How Catholics could decide the presidential election
A new report points to the important role that Catholics could play in November’s presidential election, showing that they are almost evenly split between President Obama and Mitt Romney and that they are open to both candidates’ views of the role the government should play in helping the poor.
Moreover, 2008 exit polls show that at least 23 percent of voters in key swing states such as Ohio, Florida, Nevada, Iowa, New Hampshire, and Wisconsin were Catholic, suggesting that their votes could prove decisive in a tight race this year.
Among the five main religious groups studied by the Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI) and the Brookings Institution, three take clear sides, both in the presidential race and on the role the government should play in society, according to a study of 3,000 likely voters released Monday.
Black protestants and Americans unaffiliated with any religion generally favor Mr. Obama and are comparatively more supportive of government programs to help the poor. Meanwhile, white Evangelicals generally line up with Mr. Romney and take a more negative view of government-assistance programs. [more]