Polls track voting patterns of Catholics, evangelicals

Posted: Friday, April 16, 2004

WASHINGTON (AP) A survey released Monday found that U.S. Roman Catholic voters are about evenly split between President Bush and presumed Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry.

The poll by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate at Georgetown University found 45 percent of likely Catholic voters supported Kerry, while 41 percent backed Bush. The margin of error is 3.5 percentage points.

The split is similar to that found by the same survey in 2000, when Bush faced Democrat Al Gore.

This year's poll of 1,001 adults was conducted March 15-21. About 23 percent of voting age adults identify themselves as Catholic.

A separate survey on U.S. evangelicals released Tuesday found that 74 percent of white evangelicals said they favored Bush, while 23 percent said they would vote for Kerry.

Sixty-nine percent of white evangelicals identify themselves as Republican, while 84 percent of black evangelicals say they're Democrats.

And while white evangelicals overwhelmingly oppose gay marriage and civil unions for homosexual couples, about half said in the poll that they would prefer that state laws be changed to ban gay marriage instead of amending the U.S. Constitution.

The survey of 1,610 adults was conducted between March 16 and April 4 for U.S. News & World Report and PBS' ''Religion & Ethics Newsweekly.'' It has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.5 percentage points.

Catholic poll: http://cara.georgetown.edu/

Evangelical poll: http://www.pbs.org/wnet/religionandethics/

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