Mark A. Smith is professor of Political Science and an adjunct professor of Comparative Religion and Communication at the University of Washington. His research focuses on economic and religious groups, ideas, and influences in American politics. In his new book, Secular Faith: How Culture Has Trumped Religion in American Politics, Dr. Smith argues that religion is not nearly the unchanging conservative influence in American politics that we have come to think it is and is best understood as responding to changing political and cultural values rather than shaping them.
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?
Don’t believe everything you read on the Internet, folks.
Nate Silver calculates the probability that 2012 might actually resemble 2008. His conclusion? Obama now has a 20% chance of actually beating his 2008 margin in the popular vote.
In other news, Bill Clinton is only one Irish house away from running for president of the Emerald Isle.
Providing some much needed historical context, PRRI Research Associate Juhem Navarro-Rivera examines “changes and continuity” among white voters without a college education.
Connecticut is preparing to test the political IQ of overseas voters like never before.
More than 6-in-10 Americans agree that God has granted America a special place in human history. How America should achieve this exceptional role is, however, being fiercely debated by the two presidential candidates.
The election has already started in the two-dozen states where early voting is permitted. NPR reports that 35% of the votes in the 2012 general election could be cast before November 6.
There is not a single Starbucks in the whole of Scandinavia? Seriously?