August 27, 2007

Evangelical Approval of President Bush

44%

That was President Bush’s approval rating among white evangelicals in a recent survey, far higher than among the electorate as a whole but considerably lower than in earlier years.

White evangelical Protestants have been one of the groups consistently backing George W. Bush throughout his presidency — as recently as December 2004, more than three-quarters of white evangelicals gave the president a positive performance review — but a June survey found just 44% of white evangelicals expressing approval of the president’s job performance; roughly the same number (46%) say they disapprove. However, among evangelicals who turned out to vote last November, exit polls found President Bush’s approval rating was 70%, far higher than among the electorate as a whole. Overall the GOP did very well among white evangelicals voters in 2006: nationwide, 72% voted Republican in races for the U.S. House. Evangelicals split from other voters in 2006 in the very high level of importance they attached to values issues such as gay marriage and abortion: 59% of evangelicals said these issues were “extremely important” to their vote, compared with just 29% of other voters. Still, 41% said they were glad that Democrats won control of Congress in November, although that was substantially fewer than among other religious groups and seculars. Read More