Mainline shows shift to Democrats

Most change among centrist mainliners
Although mainline Protestant denominations for decades have been closely linked to liberal causes—civil rights, women’s movements, abortion rights and antiwar protests—most of their members have been mainstays of the Republican Party.

However, a recent survey found that 2008 marks “a historic tipping point” in party identification among mainline Protestants, with 46 percent now calling themselves Democrats and 37 percent saying they are Republicans.

That was the first time Democrats outnumbered Republicans in mainline churches since the New Deal era prior to World War II, according to research sponsored by the Paul B. Henry Institute for the Study of Christianity and Politics at Calvin College.


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