The Mormons: The Most Conservative Religious Group In America

More

That's according to a new report from Pew, released today and based on data from the group's 2007 U.S. Religious Landscape Survey.

More Mormons (60 percent) identify themselves as conservatives than any other religious group; they also lead every other group in GOP party identification (at 65 percent)--much higher than the general population in both categories. Here are a few of Pew's charts to break it down:

Pew Mormons ideology.gif

Mormons party and ideology.gifKeep in mind that GOP identification is very low right now--only 35 percent of the general population identify themselves as Republicans--making the Mormon numbers even higher by comparison. Evangelicals, for instance--a group that has, for the past decade, been counted as an influential Republican voting bloc--identify with the GOP at a 50 percent rate, a full 15 percent lower than Mormons.

The only group that's more partisan is members of historically black churches, according to Pew, 77 percent of whom identify themselves as Democrats. (Though that's more of a racial subset of a religious category, than it is a religious category in its own right.)

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Mormons are much more socially conservative than both the general population and other groups: 70 percent say abortion should be illegal in all or most cases, compared to 42 percent of the general population and 35 percent for Evangelicals. 68 percent say homosexuality should be discouraged, rather than accepted--that's in line with evangelicals (64 percent) and Muslims (61 percent)--hence the LDS church's involvement in Prop. 8--but lower than the general population, 40 percent of which shares that opinion.

Mormons make up 1.7 percent of the nation; 35 percent of them live in Utah. In that regard, one could say they're overrepresented in the national political elite, as both Mitt Romney and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid are Mormons. Numbers-wise, Mormons aren't a huge voting bloc--but, as we saw with Prop 8, they can be politically powerful: supporters of the gay marriage ban estimated in October that Mormons had donated 30 to 40 percent of the $25.5 million raised to back it; Advocate.com estimated that figure at 77 percent.

Jump to comments
Presented by

Chris Good is a political reporter for ABC News. He was previously an associate editor at The Atlantic and a reporter for The Hill.

Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

What's the Number One Thing We Could Do to Improve City Life?

A group of journalists, professors, and non-profit leaders predict the future of livable, walkable cities


Elsewhere on the web

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Adventures in Legal Weed

Colorado is now well into its first year as the first state to legalize recreational marijuana. How's it going? James Hamblin visits Aspen.

Video

What Makes a Story Great?

The storytellers behind House of CardsandThis American Life reflect on the creative process.

Video

Tracing Sriracha's Origin to Thailand

Ever wonder how the wildly popular hot sauce got its name? It all started in Si Racha.

Video

Where Confiscated Wildlife Ends Up

A government facility outside of Denver houses more than a million products of the illegal wildlife trade, from tigers and bears to bald eagles.

Video

Is Wine Healthy?

James Hamblin prepares to impress his date with knowledge about the health benefits of wine.

Video

The World's Largest Balloon Festival

Nine days, more than 700 balloons, and a whole lot of hot air

Writers

Up
Down

More in Politics

Just In