Thursday, February 04, 2010

"Progressive" Christians Outnumber Evangelicals

Thanks to Luke, I found this Pew Forum survey of American Christianity that shares this tidbit:
The survey traced the spiritual roots of the religious right and left to two broader faith communities. On the right, white evangelical Christians comprise 24% of the population and form a distinct group whose members share core religious beliefs as well as crystallized and consistently conservative political attitudes.

On the left, a larger share of the public (32%) identifies as "liberal or progressive Christians." But unlike evangelicals, progressive Christians come from different religious traditions and disagree almost as often as they agree on a number of key political and social issues.

These differences in the makeup of the religious left and right are an important reason why white evangelicals remain a more politically potent force. On issues ranging from the origins of life to Christ's second coming, evangelicals express distinctly different views from those held by the rest of the public and even other religious groups.
So, to recap: more American Christians self-identify as "progressive," but evangelicals seem to be the bigger group because they're a more unified bloc.

And this is a big reason why you get to see a Focus on the Family ad during the Super Bowl while the UCC's commercials are banned from the network.