Many Tea Partiers part of religious right: study

October 5, 2010

tea party

(Photo: Tea Party member Ellie Mels at a Tea Party Fair in Charlotte, Michigan July 24, 2010/Rebecca Cook)

Many supporters of the conservative Tea Party movement that has shaken up politics share the same views as the Christian right on social issues like abortion and the role of religion in public life, according to a poll released on Tuesday.

While the loosely organized Tea Party movement has focused largely on shrinking the size of government and other fiscal issues, its backers are more likely to support government restrictions on gay marriage and other social issues, the Public Religion Research Institute found in its American Values Survey.

The survey found significant overlap between the Tea Party, made up mostly of Republicans, and the religious right, which has played a significant political role for decades.

“On nearly all basic demographic characteristics, there are no significant differences between Americans who identify with the Tea Party movement and those who identify with the Christian conservative movement,” the study’s authors wrote.

Nearly half of those who identify with the Tea Party believe that the Bible is the literal word of God, and a similar proportion thinks that public officials do not pay enough attention to religion, the survey found. They are more likely than the population as a whole to view America as a Christian nation.

Read the full story here and the Factbox U.S. Tea Party movement similar to Christian right.

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10 comments

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So they are for government getting off your back, except in your bedroom, doctor’s office, or if you are Muslim, liberal or homosexual. You don’t have an inalienable right to pursue life, liberty and happiness if you contract cancer, but you better to be able to buy all the guns and bullets you can carry without a background check at a gun show. Adds a whole new dimension to the term “limited” government.

Posted by URKiddinRight | Report as abusive

So they believe the Bible is the literal word of God, even though modern English didn’t exist 2000 years ago. Well, OK, sure.

Posted by borisjimbo | Report as abusive

Same old story – angry, resentful, bitter, white people. What else is new?

Posted by Nerau | Report as abusive

I think you three simply do not wish to listen. There is one thing abundently clear that the Tea Party wants, that is less government and less taxes. Pretty simple. Statements like nearly half is not a majority, and comparing coincidences of demographics is not a conclusion.

If they were to run on more issues, they would probably alienate themselves just like every political movement. They aren’t a party so they don’t really need to take a position beyond less government spending and intrusion. Government spending is a very serious issue in the US right now. We cannot have a public sector that represents 30+% GDP and continue to use a Capitalist structure. Ontop of this the current congress does not want to deal with the fact there is no magical way to tax that much out of the economy to fund the growing size of government.

Posted by Cleffy | Report as abusive

It is their fundamentalist tilt that makes it less likely this year that I will vote for a conservative than last election; a mullah with a Bible is still a mullah. 100 years ago people in europe were fined and punished for nto being repsectful enough of religious orders and rules in Europe. Shall we now put up with that in the US?

Posted by RET_SFC | Report as abusive

@Nerau,
You ever met a white person? No? Well keep looking and you’ll find one somewhere outside your parents house.

Talk about generalizations, your comments do nothing for the progress of your assumed liberal cause.

Posted by BHOlied | Report as abusive

@URKiddin
The Tea Party is for letting you do whatever you want. Despite the fact that (in order of your rant) what gays do is explicitly wrong and gross and requires adapters you still have every right to do it. What the TP doesn’t want is the government telling the people what marriage is. We could have many discussions on this topic but lets just say somethings just don’t fit – we’ll leave it at that.
Regarding the doctors office (health care reform). The government ruins everything it touches. Healthcare will be no exception. The bill was not about lowering costs at all, it was about increasing the dependency of the population on the government. Most, if not all, studies that have been released show that HC will go up. The new efficiency is based on Medicare which sucks and is bleeding money every day. So besides the actual facts above (funny you didn’t mention any in your rant) the TP doesn’t want people dependent on the gov, the gov messing up HC and because a lot of people in this nation have chosen not to work and more will do so if they are guaranteed free healthcare that really I end up paying for. HC reform didn’t reform anything except the number of people on lady libertys teet. Litigation reform? Nothing. Allowing policies to be sold across state lines? Nothing. Creating transparency (one of BHO’s favorite words) on the costs charged to insurance agencies? Nothing. Removing the anti-trust exemption for HC companies? Nothing. Protecting Union policies. Check. Expanding the roles. Check. Shoving it down our throats. Check. Go ahead and ignore scott brown. Sure, it wasn’t about healthcare, he just got lucky. Massachusetts is red son, how about them apples?
Muslims can do what they want as long as they are peaceful. I don’t hear much Muslim disapproval of Jihad or suicide bombings and I sure has heck know that you would not like Sharia law if it was imposed upon you. Heaven forbid you are a woman. You would be stoned in the streets for your (assumed) homesexual acts.
And yes, the guns and bullets are to defend our freedom from people like you who wish to tell us what we should and should not pay for. I will gladly help a brother out who cannot help himself. However, the government makes no such distinction. Laziness is rewarded where liberals rule and where liberals rule I will be packing. The founding fathers knew this was the ultimate protection for God fearing and loving citizens and exercising our 2nd amendment rights is just as American and dissent. And please, no background checks? Did MSNBC teach you that lie?
You will get a fresh dose of dissent in November.

Posted by BHOlied | Report as abusive

Cleffy, you are are much less than honest- All you have to do is listen to the views as voiced by your candidates, see the placards they wave at there rallies, and tally-up the obvious hypocrisy they’ve exposed among themselves: Less entitlement programs, like social security and medicare because they are among the designated duties of the Federal government- this is vehemently espoused by Tea Partier Paul Miller who just happened to receive federal entitlements (farm subsidies) for letting BIG GOVERNMENT tell him how to utilize his land. Christine O’Donnell whom wants t teach us about fiscal conservatism and transparency in gvernment can’t manage her own checkbook, can’t even tell the truth about her educational credentials, and is currently accused of malfeasace with campaign funds. Sharon Angle is nt nearly as concerned with fiscal conservatism as she with using any and all media to get donations, which is why she only grants interviews to those outlets that let her blatantly plead for donations. She’s also advocated armed revolution if you don’t agree with the decisoions and poolicies that come out of our 3 (THREE) branches of government (that’s what WASHINGTON is).

You guys wrap yourselves in the flag and labels of fiscal responsibility but it doesn’t disguise your hypocrisy, nor your underlying ethnic-religious chauvenism. In short, you are liars.

Posted by Interactidiomas | Report as abusive

We like to call them teabaggers – seems a more appropriate title for their silliness.

Posted by finneganG | Report as abusive

@Cleffy: We’ll see how serious are the Teahadists about smaller government and lower taxes. If they move to abolish the Department of Welfare (d/b/a the Department of Agriculture), we can take them seriously. If they move to abolish Social Security and Medicare, ditto.

But if they keep their welfare and their socialism, they’ll be nothing but flip-flopping moral relativists.

Posted by Gaius_Baltar | Report as abusive