Janelle Wong is an Associate Professor of American Studies and the Director of Asian American Studies at University of Maryland in College Park, MD. Her research focuses on race, immigration, and political mobilization. Dr. Wong is the author of Democracy’s Promise: Immigrants and American Civic Institutions (2006, University of Michigan Press) and co-author of two books on Asian American politics. She is currently working on a book about the impact Asian American and Latino evangelical Christians will have on the traditional conservative Christian movement and immigrant political participation. Recently, PRRI had the opportunity to speak with Dr. Wong in depth about some of the 2014 American Values Survey’s findings on Asian Americans.
In a column for Huffington Post Politics, I lay out a significant challenge for the Republican Party: the gap between Millennials (age 18-29) and white evangelical Protestants on controversial issues like same-sex marriage. In the piece, I argue that the GOP will have a difficult time striking an effective balance between the views of Millennials and evangelical Protestants on these issues, although they will have to appeal to both in order to find electoral success:
One of the most significant challenges facing the GOP can be reduced to just two nearly identical numbers: 72% and 71%. According to a recent PRRI/Brookings survey, 72% of Millennials (Americans age 18 to 29) favor allowing gay and lesbian couples to marry legally, while a nearly identical number (71%) of white evangelical Protestants oppose same-sex marriage. Millennials are among the strongest supporters of same-sex marriage, while white evangelicals remain the issue’s most ardent opponents. In 2016, the GOP nominee will face a serious coalition management challenge, since the party needs the votes of both groups.
Read the full column online here.