June 8, 2012

[06.08.2012]

Welcome to the Morning Buzz, PRRI’s morning dose of religion-related news with a shot of data – because what doesn’t liven up a morning round-up like some public opinion numbers?

Two Siberian tiger cubs abandoned by their mother in Russia have found a new mother in a Shar Pei dog, check out the adorable cubs and their mother.

Democratic leaders are making a push to raise the minimum wage, introducing the “Catching Up to 1968 Act of 2012.” This Act would raise the federal minimum wage to $10 per hour, and for workers that rely on tips, it would raise it to 70% of the minimum wage and never less than $5.50. Across almost all religious, political, and demographic groups, Americans support an increase in minimum wage from $7.25 an hour to $10 an hour (67% in favor, 30% opposed).

A new CNN/ORC International Survey found that 60% of Americans say they have a close friend or family member who is gay, a number that has increased from 49% in 2010. Further, they found that 54% of Americans now say that marriages between gay and lesbian couples should be recognized as valid by law. PRRI’s research confirms these findings. In June 2011, we found that 54% of Americans have a close friend or family member who is gay or lesbian. In March 2012, we also found a majority (52%) of Americans favor allowing gay and lesbian couples to marry.  PRRI’s own Robert P. Jones was recently on CBN explaining how these relationships impact support for same-sex marriage.

After eight months on the national stage, Occupy Wall Street is running out of money and losing public’s support. In November, at the high point of the movement, PRRI found that OWS rivaled the Tea Party in the number of Americans who said the movements shared their values (23% each). If the movement doesn’t find its feet this summer, one question will be how strongly the issues of inequality it put on the national agenda will resonate through into the presidential campaign.

Wondering about school prayer at the university level? The Huffington Post has assembled a slide show of invocations and benedictions heard at university graduations around the country.

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