Spiritual Politics blog
State by State
Leonard E. Greenberg Center
Democratic primary exit poll
Republican primary exit poll
Among the attendance groups, the closest Clinton came to Obama was among
the “Nevers,” where the gap was 11 percentage points (42 percent to 53
percent); elsewhere, the gap ranged between 30 and 40 points. Obama carried
the Protestants (including “Other Christians”) by a two-to-one margin, as he
did the Nones; non-Judeo-Christians went for him by almost three-to-one.
Obama carried the Catholics as well, 53 percent to 47 percent, but he lost
white Catholics 58 percent to 42 percent. Altogether, Catholics comprised
nine percent of the Democratic vote. With white Catholics at 5 percent, it
was their African-American co-religionists who gave Obama his margin.
The big story was that, under the media radar screen, Huckabee succeeded
in mobilizing white evangelicals to vote for him. As chair of the Georgia
Republican Party from 2001 to 2004, Ralph Reed built the machine that
flipped the state into Republican hands for the first time since
Reconstruction. As the following dispatch (from a partisan Democrat who
happens to belong to a conservative Baptist church) shows, the machine is
still running in 2008.
I guess you saw last night the big voter turnout for Huckabee
in GA – fueled by his non-stop appearances in white evangelical
pulpits the last couple of months, appearances with Sonny
Perdue, constant promotion by right-wing talk radio blabber Neal
Boortz with WSB here in Atlanta with that “fair tax” baloney,
etc. He was at a rally this weekend with the “GA Christian
Alliance” (changed name after the national Christian Coalition
kicked them out a couple of years ago because the GA bunch was
too over the top for even them!) and that ding-bat Sadie Fields
(an old Ralph Reed protégé who took over in GA after he came out
of the lobbyist closet a few years back). And yes, my church was
telling people to go vote for Huckabee this past Sunday, just
like tons of others.
Sonny Perdue is governor of the state; Sadie Fields, the capable leader
of the religious right in Georgia.
Huckabee won 43 percent of the evangelical vote, while McCain and Romney
split the balance. He would not have been able to eke out a victory,
however, without the 23 percent of the Catholic vote he managed to obtain.
That was more than twice the size of the Catholic vote he got in South
Carolina, and suggests that the campaign may have made a special outreach
effort. (Huckabee does have prominent Catholic supporters in Arkansas.)
McCain and Romney took roughly equal shares of both Catholics and
Protestants (including “Other Christians”).
Huck won decisively among those for whom “religious beliefs matter a
great deal,” while Romney prevailed with the “somewhats” and “not muches.”
For a plurality of those for whom religion mattered “not at all,” McCain was