Catholic voters more active this midterm election

Screenshot of map showing density of Catholics in 2010. (The Washington Post)

This week, as Sister of Social Service and NETWORK executive director Simone Campbell has been encouraging Minnesotans to vote in the upcoming midterm elections, the Pew Research Center released the results of poll on how religious Americans vote. 

According to the polled:

  • Catholic voters will play a larger part in this year’s midterm elections than they did in 2010. Seventy-nine percent of Catholics said they definitely plan to vote in November, compared to 68 percent four years ago. With a jump of 11 percentage points, Catholics had the largest increase in committed voters than any other Christian group polled.
  • While white Catholics remain solidly Republican, they don’t always vote like conservatives. Sixty-seven percent of Catholics said the Democratic Party was doing a good job of representing their views on same-sex marriage, with those dissenting saying the party was too conservative. Only 37 percent of Catholics said they liked the way the GOP handled the issue of same-sex marriage.
  • That being said, this time around, Catholics are less pleased with the Obama administration. In 2009, 38 percent of Catholics thought Obama was friendly toward religion. Now, only 30 percent believe so. White Catholics and evangelicals actually had the largest uptick (19 percentage points) in the number of those who thought the administration was explicitly unfriendly toward religion. 

This U.S. Religion Census map published in The Washington Post shows where Catholics live in the U.S. and how that can affect an election.